Good to Remember

I sent this bit of encouragement to my son today; I’ve been meditating a bit, and allowing God to soothe my soul with the same encouragement. . .

“. . . Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God, who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”  (2 Corinthians 3:4-6 ESV)

“. . . But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”                    (2 Corinthians 3:16-18 ESV)

How pervasive and subtle and crafty is the enemy in encouraging us to craft this god of self-reliance!  In an effort to “feel good about ourselves,” to “love ourselves,” we so quickly go to an extreme and, in essence, remove God from the picture.

Now, being religious and knowing the “right” thing to say (who says we aren’t politically correct?  should we more accurately term PC as “pharisaically correct?”) we usually won’t admit that we worship this false god.  His counterpart is the god of self-loathing (you will most often find me wandering toward that altar. . .).  Let’s face it; it’s all self-focus, self-obsession.  It’s sin, and when the Holy Spirit identifies it, we must repent.

I can hear it now. . .”Bev, if this is the way you choose to encourage. . .” but please read on to see how this passage encouraged my soul, and how God lifted me up and helped me to keep walkin’ on. . .

I have no sufficiency in myself.  When I “try so hard and it’s too hard and it’s too much. . .” it’s all true.  The task is too big.  People are broken.  Lives are shattered.  Souls are lost. 

God is sufficient; my sufficiency is not mine, it’s God’s!  He made me competent to share His message of love and forgiveness and healing and life.  The God who created the world; the God who will never leave me nor forsake me; the God who saved my scrawny neck from the muddy pit; the God who can raise the dead; He made me competent — He chose me to carry His message!  How can I concentrate on me, when it’s all Him?!

God is the One who does the saving, who lifts the veil from a person’s eyes so they can see the truth.  God lifts the veil; not any profound words that I say; not any amount of standing on my head or being the best rescuer that ever was or being so indispensible that no one can breathe without my help –God lifts the veil!  When I am obedient to Him, when I listen to Him and respond, when I share from what He has taught me —  God may use that means to lift the veil — but God lifts the veil.

I’m being transformed.  It’s a process.  It doesn’t happen all at once.  God’s transforming me, as I behold His glory.  As I spend time with Him.  As I listen to Him.  As I desire Him more than His gifts, more than His benefits.  As I desire Him.

Here’s freedom — it’s not all about me.  It’s not my talents, my strengths, my gifts, my feelings about me.  It’s all about God.  Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.  Free to listen.  Free to respond with a resounding ‘yes, Lord.’  Free to do what He’s called me to do because He has made me competent.  Free to stop obsessing about what I can or cannot do; how worthy or unworthy I am; how useful or worthless I am.  Free to walk with God.  Free to be His child.  Free.  Free.  Oh, thank You Father, I’m Free!

Something really good to remember . . .

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