I have come to realize something incredibly vital to my relationship with Christ.
When I dwell on my sinfulness, castigating myself for how wretched I am, I dive headlong into another pit of sin — the sin of self-worship, sin-worship, idolatry. Instead of fixing my eyes on Christ, I have my eyes riveted on all that is wretched, ugly, and despicable about myself.
Does this mean I ignore my sinfulness? No, it means that I recognize it, repent of it, and make it my determined purpose to run the race set before me.
But what is the point of beating myself up over my sin? It serves me no beneficial purpose whatsoever. Rather than spurring me on in faith and good deeds, continually yelling at myself for sinning pushes me deeper into the very pit of sin itself.
Negative reinforcement has never been a motivator for me. Negative reinforcement, instead, convinces me of the lies of Satan: I am worthless, I am useless, I should just kill myself and get it all over with, I have no purpose, there is no reason for me to draw another breath, etc., etc., etc.
I would much rather fill my mind with the truth of God’s Word — I would rather take my thoughts captive and make them obedient to Christ by aligning them with the Word of God. I would much rather choose to look at myself as He looks at me — His beautiful, redeemed, holy, and capable daughter, filled with His Spirit, washed in His blood, and deeply, deeply loved.
When I see myself through His eyes, I am emboldened to obedience. My spirit swells with the strength of His Spirit. I dance as He sings over me, as He takes delight in me. Yes, He takes delight in me.
Abba has given me all that I need to accomplish His will in my life — He has given me Himself. What more could I possibly need? I am made “competently competent,” as Beth Moore says, by the indwelling Spirit of God. In other words, I am more than capable of living out His will on a consistent, daily, moment by moment basis, because Almighty God Himself has taken up residence in me. Nothing can prevail against Him! He is, after all, God Almighty! He can and will accomplish His purpose down to the tiniest detail. All I have to do is say, “YES!! A THOUSAND TIMES, YES!!” and then do it, a thousand times over.
Therefore, I will fix my eyes on the Risen Redeemer and will run this race, throwing off everything that hinders me.
I refuse to dive into another pit.
I choose You. A thousand times, yes.