This morning in my devotional, A Faith Encouraged: A Devotional Guide to Being Orthodox on Purpose, the following question really stuck out to me…
What barriers do you have in your own heart and life that keep you from embracing the reality that God has loved you so much that He has taken on flesh, just like your flesh, and has done everything to enable you to enjoy eternity in His presence?
Jeez, I thought. I consider myself to be strong in my faith and strong in my love for Christ but I have about 120 barriers preventing me from getting even closer to Him.
This question was in reference to the following verse in John 8:54-55 –
“Jesus replied, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me. Though you do not know him, I know him. If I said I did not, I would be a liar like you, but I do know him and obey his word.”
Our Lord makes this claim in order to provide these religious leaders He was addressing with a final chance to cure their spiritual blindness. Jesus was telling them that HE was higher than Abraham and HE was higher than Moses. These religious leaders were certainly in shock because this was a declaration of His Divinity and completely overhauled all they had originally believed in. They couldn’t believe HIM!
So I asked myself this question again, what barriers are keeping me from believing in Him?
I thought a lot about my life lately. I thought a lot about what and who has shaped who I am. I thought about who God wants me to be. I thought a lot what is stopping me from being that person.
My greatest barrier: the devil and the little whispers he fills my head with
things he likes me to believe:
- I am not good enough
- I am not small enough
- I am not pretty enough
- I am not smart enough
- I am not strong enough
- I will never be enough,
I didn’t realize I listened to intently to those little whispers in my head until I truly thought about it.
How many times do I pass a mirror and pick out the things I don’t like about myself? My face is too chubby, my thighs are too big, my stomach is too fluffy.
How many times do I beat myself up for not being smart enough in school?
How many times do I compare myself to someone else?
My point is, I listen to the devil A LOT more than I thought I did.
Why is that? Why do I spend 20 minutes with my devotional in the morning reading God’s word but then spend the rest of the day forgetting everything He said and only listening to those little whispers.
Why am I letting the devil be such a barrier in my life?
Here is what I ultimately know to be true:
My Lord, Your Lord, OUR LORD took on human flesh and spent His life ultimately knowing He was going to be dying for my sins, your sins, OUR SINS. He died for me, for you, FOR US. He loves me, He loves you, HE LOVES US.
Give Him any barriers you have. Give Him an hesitations. Give Him all that you are and all that you can offer because He ultimately wants YOU to be in Paradise with HIM.
How freakin cool is that? To be in Paradise with Our Lord. I can’t wait. But until that day comes, I am giving all my barriers to my Lord Jesus Christ.