Like most people in NYC, I have a go to spot for my daily needs. There’s the one coffee shop I go to every morning. There’s the nearby deli where I get all my sandwiches. And last but not least, there’s a small window storefront that I go to for my sodas. I can’t help it, but I am a soda addict. Anyways, I go there so much that the owner and I recognize one another instantly. He knows what I want before I even say a word. We usually have small talk here and there, but nothing beyond that. This is New York City after all. Everything is about quickness and efficiency.
So most times we see each other, and without a word, he grabs a Diet Coke, and I put the money out, we say thanks and go on with our days. But this one afternoon, I came to the window and saw the owner moving some things around. He then looked at me and started sharing how he’s getting older and about his bad knees. He went on to share how he needed to get some work done on both knees, but couldn’t because no one would take care of his store. In that moment I wrestled with whether or not I should pray for him right there. But I didn’t. I told him I was sorry, and I walked away thinking maybe God will give me another opportunity at the right time.
As I kept thinking about it, I felt discouraged and muttered to myself that I was nothing but a coward. Wait, what? Where did that thought come from? …But isn’t that what we usually do in life when faced with struggles or failures? We are so quick to condemn ourselves and believe our own labels. “I’m an idiot. I’m a coward. I’m ugly. I’m alone. etc.” That’s when I realized that was the issue God wanted to deal with. You have to know that He never speaks to us that way or gets us to do something from that place of guilt either. So I could either address this or go on believing that was who I am the entire day.
I believe the enemy’s greatest tactic isn’t to get us to just sin, but to believe the lie about who we are after the fact. Sin is the bait, and the hook that catches us is the lie. Pastor Bill Johnson has said when you believe the lie, you empower the liar! If I did believe what I said about myself, then I would never even consider praying for anyone the rest of the day, even if I sensed God speaking to me clearly. Why? Because I would have excused myself from stepping up because, well that’s who I am. “I am a coward”. In that moment I had to reject the lie and agree with truth! I am a child of God. I know His voice. I know how to obey when He speaks. I am courageous through His Spirit and love.
So today reject the lie! Repent if you must, align yourself with truth, and walk in the fullness of who God says you are. This is what it means to stand in truth. Standing in truth is simply agreeing with what God says. Here is what He is saying to you now… You know God’s voice. You know how to be led by His Spirit. You know when it’s Him and when it’s you trying to strive. Rest in His love and live out His truth. Amen!