Happy Friday everyone! First, I wanted to let you know that I have created a page for my Freedom Friday weekly feature so that if you’re a new reader or you’ve missed any posts and you want to go back and read them you can find them all in one place. You can find all of these posts under the “Freedom Friday” page on the right in the sidebar.
Last week, I talked about 5 things that help me overcome obstacles that inevitably arise as a result of my addiction to food. One of those things that I do to help me overcome these emotional stumbling blocks is to memorize Scripture. Today, and in the coming weeks because I just can’t fit it all in one post, I am going to share some of my favorite verses with you that help me to break down those walls that stand in the way of me gaining freedom in this area of my life.
Let me preface this, though, by just saying that I am aware that many of my readers are not of the Christian faith. Because of that, you may think that this post does not apply to you. I encourage you to keep reading to the end, though, because regardless of what you think of the Bible, we can all use a little more positive self-talk in our lives and you never know where you might find inspiration for that. There’s a lot of good stuff here, so stick with me.
The reason why I titled this post “Speak the Truth” is because I am so saddened by the lies that are being fed to women in our culture and that we are falling for, HOOK, LINE AND SINKER. I was watching “The Biggest Loser” the other night and I was so saddened by hearing one of the contestants, Megan, who is as cute as pie, say to her trainer, Bob, “I’m fat and I’m ugly.” Nothing could be further from the truth but she can’t see that and it just completely breaks my heart.
I think about my daughter and what I want her to believe about herself and I realize that her hearing the truth has to start with me. I would be crushed if I ever heard words like what Biggest Loser’s Megan said ever escape the lips of my daughter. But, should I be surprised if it does? She has heard that, and much worse, I’m ashamed to say, come out of my mouth.
I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of believing lies. The Bible says that Satan is the Father of all lies and I believe that is one of his most effective weapons in our generation, especially among women: deception. We are bombarded on a continual basis by words and images that feed us a steady diet of “You are not good enough”, “You are not pretty enough”, “You are not thin enough”, “You are not smart enough.”
“You are not enough.”
Ladies (and the few guys who read-love you!), just STOP. Stop believing the lies. You are beautiful. You are perfect just the way you are and God loves you right where you are.
I’m not saying that there isn’t always room for improvement or that we don’t have to work at bettering ourselves. We do. We absolutely do. That’s what this blog is all about. But in all the discussion about what we can do make ourselves better, sometimes we completely miss the point.
So what is the point? The message I want you to hear louder than any others you may get from reading this blog is that your value does not come from the size of your bank account or the size of your pants. You worth is not determined by what brand of clothes you wear, if you have the best hair or the thinnest waist or live in the best neighborhood. You are MORE.
Please, please, please for the love of all that is holy, STOP BELIEVING THE LIES. At the very least, if you don’t think you are there yet, mentally, please STOP SPEAKING THE LIES. Especially in the presence of your daughters.
Instead, let’s fill our hearts with some truth, mkay? The Bible Study I am currently working through is Beth Moore’s “Believing God”. In the very beginning of the study she has us memorize 5 statements of faith. They are:
- God is who he says he is
- God can do what He says He can do
- I am who God says I am
- I can do all things through Christ
- God’s Word is alive and active in me
While I personally believe that all of these things are true and absolutely essential for overcoming any major obstacle you might face, I want to focus in on number three for our purposes today. So, to get to the TRUTH, we have to ask ourselves, who does God say I am?
In future posts, I hope to flesh each of the above beliefs out a litte bit and explore how they relate to this weight-loss journey (hint: it’s not really about the weight-loss at all), but today I just want to give you some truth to replace the lies you have been believing.
First, let’s start with one of my favorites from Philippians:
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
While not directly related to our question, who does God say I am, it’s s good place to start because it shows us what kind of thoughts God wants us to dwell on. News flash: It’s not the lies!!!
When we focus our attention on the lies, our hearts are drawn away from God and we become self-centered. The enemy knows this and LOVES it. Don’t let him win! Focus on the TRUE, the NOBLE, the RIGHT, the PURE, the LOVELY, the ADMIRABLE, the EXCELLENT, the PRAISEWORTHY. Those are the things of God!
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3.17-18
Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom? Do you believe that? If you are a Christian, you have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and there IS freedom. It’s not a future freedom, it’s a RIGHT NOW freedom. You already have it!
What do you see when you look in the mirror? God has said the only reflection you need to worry about is the reflection of Him in your life. We ALL reflect God’s glory. Not just some of us, ALL of us. And the really cool thing about this? We get better lookin’ all the time! We are not only CURRENTLY reflecting God’s glory, but we are looking more and more like him every day.
Beloved, I am convinced that it grieves the Holy Spirit when you look in the mirror and say, “I’m fat and I’m ugly.” You are desecrating the Holy when you say and believe such things. You are beautiful because you are a reflection of God’s own glory. Do we dare call that ugly?
For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
I have a challenge for you. Go into your bathroom. Shut the door. Lock the door. Take off your clothes. Look in the mirror and repeat after me, “Lord, I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” Do it every day until you start to believe it! Do you believe it? Do you believe what God says about you? Live in that truth, let that truth wash over you, speak it to yourself, put it on notecards and leave it where you will be continually reminded of it.
It’s time to tell all of those voices in your head-the voices of your past where people told you that you weren’t enough, your own voice that speaks such hatefulness over yourself, the voice of Satan shouting at you that you will NEVER be enough so why even try-to SHUT UP!!!!!
I’m not even being remotely figurative here. I want you to literally tell those voices to SHUT UP! Shout it if you have to. Say it over and over and over again until you believe it. And then say it some more. Every time you hear it, put those voices in their place. They have no business poisoning your mind with their lies and you DON’T have to let them.
It’s time to listen to the ONE voice, the ONLY voice, that will always only speak truth and love over you. This voice will NEVER deceive you, will NEVER hate you, will NEVER condemn you or make you feel ashamed or worthless. I promise you, this voice will NEVER disappoint you. Even when it seems like your whole world is falling down around you-and trust me, I’ve been there more times than I would ever care to admit-this is the one voice that will always tell you the truth. Which would you rather listen to? Which would you rather believe? I choose TRUTH.
The LORD your God is with you,
he is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing.
Let that one sink in for a minute. If you are a Christian you are probably quite familiar with the value of singing praise to God, of worshiping Him with music. I love to sing and there are times when my heart is never closer to Him than when I am singing in worship. I can hardly imagine what it would be like to hear God sing though. The truth that He takes such delight in me, that He rejoices over me is almost too much for me to bear. When He sees us, He sees something beautiful. He doesn’t see “fat and ugly”.
From one of the most beautiful chapters in all of Scripture:
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
My goodness, if He doesn’t condemn you, how can you condemn yourself? Do you feel like a conqueror? Do you feel like MORE than a conqueror? Notice again, that the verb tense here is the PRESENT tense. It’s not just some elusive dream that awaits us in heaven someday. No, these truths are for us to claim right now, today!
Nothing can separate us from God and His over-whelming, all-consuming, passionate, pursuing love for us. Have you ever experienced an earthly love like that? A love that expects nothing and sacrifices everything? Yeah, me either. And my husband is wicked awesome. But even he doesn’t love me like that. My parents don’t love me like that. My kids don’t love me like that. There is only one place to find love like that, and that’s the foot of the cross. And, if we are in Him, we can stand before Him unashamed.
Oh my goodness, guys, I could go on and on with Scripture after Scripture after Scripture that give overwhelming and convincing proof that God made us beautiful and calls us to something more than getting caught up in who and what the world says we are or says we should be. Please, if you are not convinced, let me know and I will send you even more evidence. Also, you can check out this resource for more information about who God says we are in Christ.
Commit today to stop believing the lies. Commit today to stop speaking the lies and start speaking truth. Trust me, I know what it feels like. I know how hard it is. I am speaking to myself when I write these words. I feel a conviction in my spirit when I read those Scriptures. They make me uncomfortable and antsy and really make me take a deeper look to my own thought processes that seem to be so self-defeating. I don’t mind the discomfort though because I know that leads to growth.
My intention in writing a post like this is not to make you feel guilty for your mistakes. My desire is that you will see that there is HOPE to be found in these words. That there is FREEDOM and VICTORY in submitting your heart and mind to Christ. That there is a better way than what you are experiencing right now. And hopefully, the next time I rip on myself because the scale is not cooperating, you can remind me of what is TRUE and RIGHT and PURE.
Stop believing the lies.
Start believing the truth.
Do you, like me, catch yourself speaking and believing lies?
Do you have any favorite Scriptures that have helped you on your healthy living journey? Share them with us in the comments.
Edited to add: Coincidentally, that is if I believed in coincidence, a friend of mine from college posted this video on his Facebook page today and I saw it right after I published this post. It’s a video of a touring choir I was in, in college, singing “If I Rise On the Wings of the Dawn”, which is based on Psalm 139 which I quoted above. Quite a blast from the past but it ties in to what I wrote so I thought I would post it. Plus, it’s video evidence that I actually was thin at one point in my life! I am on the second row up from the bottom, as you are looking at the stage, I am second in on the left. Enjoy!