I sat against the black fabric of the chairs at church, pen dead still as my pastor asked us about our obedience. I closed my eyes, knowing my secret answer.
Are you being obedient?
It is not a question with pretty wording. It does not sound like it will make any kind of imprint on one’s life. It is something I can and should be asking myself every day. Are you being obedient?
I knew that the answer was no. I knew exactly where I was not being obedient.
I don’t trust God.
It was a freeing and convicting moment. It was a moment where God showed me something about myself that I had been blind of for so long though it sat at the surface of my life.
Two days later, I woke up with a heavy heart. I don’t trust God. Can I ever really trust God? Am I capable of that? Of course I am not. How can God ever love someone who trusts him as little as I do?
Then I woke up the next day with the same mindset, and again the next day, and the next again.
The next week at church, I was ultra-aware of my short comings. I was ready to jot down every word our pastor expressed with precision that I might be made new in my own trust. Then he said something even more convicting than the week before:
Do you ever wake up feeling accused?
Yes. Every day this week.
I had become ultra-aware of my sinful nature and tendencies.
I had been walking through the day wondering if a perfect God could possibly love me–a sinner who has transgressed again and again against the perfect lamb’s blood.
But what the heck was I supposed to do with that?! Was I to ignore my conviction to trust in God? I knew that was from him! OR was I to continue living as if Jesus’s blood couldn’t free me from my sin? How could I ever tell the difference between conviction and accusation?
So once again, my knees hit the floor, and I begged God to teach me the difference. I prayed that he would give me a spirit to know what was His Holy Spirit’s whisper and what was the Devil’s prowl; however, as He always does, He gave me something much better than I asked for.
I was listening to a sermon by Charles Stanley this morning where he explained that conviction by the Holy Spirit is intentional. It’s pointed. Accusation from Satan is ambiguous. It does nothing buy make you question the worth that Jesus’s blood freely gives you.
If I am feeling convicted for the way treated my husband within my frustration with work, I am going to feel that specifically.
If I am feeling accused by Satan, it will be overarching. I won’t know what exactly I can repent from.
In both of these situations, I was made aware of my sin. They were simultaneously chipping away at something, and they felt very similar! The conviction was chipping away at my sin while the accusation was chipping away at my confidence in Christ.
Beloved, when Satan begins chipping, we must act! We have got to strap on our Spiritual armor and fight like we have never fought before.
Declare God’s Word
The word “declare” can have such a negative connotation in the church. We tend to tie it to the theology of prosperity where we “declare” whatever kind of wealth and health we want, and then it come to pass.
Mind you, this theology is not correct, but I wonder if we have lost the art of declaring the Word of God as truth.
Ephesians 1:13-14: In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
Colossians 1:16: For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.
Titus 1:2: In hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began.
Romans 3:23-25: For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.
Y’all, the list goes on and on and on. All the Scriptures are lined with reminders that yes, without the blood of Jesus, we cannot be worthy of anything except punishment for sin.
But with it, we will not stand accused!!
Sisters, we have to get used to looking into the face of our accuser and reminding him of his own future. We have to remind him that we–God’s children–are the ones who will reign with Him one day. That he will be cast away into death forever!
When we encounter accusation, let us not cower in defeat. Let us not even stop at declaring scripture! Let us fight back. Let us directly attack the one who’s goal it is to steal, kill, and destroy our confidence in Jesus.
Oh, Christian. At the end of the day, the enemy is all about expanding our pride in the sneakiest of ways. By making us think so lowly of ourselves that we diminish the saving power of the blood of Christ, we become obsessed with ourselves! We become engrossed in our own abilities and make our salvation into a works-based, grace-diminishing kind of thing that God did to make us feel bad about ourselves.
That is the opposite of what it is.
That is making it more about us than it is about a holy God who left His glorious throne to pursue His bride. To pursue us.
It is so good to feel conviction. It is refreshing to know that we are granted knowledge to know when we could be chasing Christ better. But we must not forget that He did chase us first. He created this plan and was not forced into dying on the cross because of us. He chose to. He gives us the might to fight temptation and flee the Devil!
Satan does not want us to know that. He wants us to think that we are capable of nothing other than moping in our sin.
So yes. I should be convicted that I do not trust God like I should.
Then I should get up, refocus myself on Jesus, and let the Holy Spirit show me how to actively trust God.
James 1:5: But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.
Ask Him, oh Christian. Then deny your accuser. Remind Him that your future is not in question. It is in Jesus.