I detailed in my recent blog post, https://graceinthemoment.wordpress.com/2015/05/26/afraid-of-my-children-part-one, we can fear that which we cannot control and our need for control is indicative of a fear problem.
Our need for control isn’t just indicative of a fear problem; it is indicative of a trust problem.
Understanding the cause and specifics of our trust problem will also lead us to the solution.
Healing isn’t just the absence of the problem, hurt, or sin. It’s the presence of the opposite: new life, peace, joy, the power of His Holy Spirit. It’s the Presence of God.
In other words, when we have a problem in a specific area it means that we don’t just have a problem with fear, for instance. We have a problem with faith — more specifically with our relationship with God.
When we have a problem with our identity, it means we have a problem with seeing ourselves as God sees us. We have a problem with our relationship with God because you can’t see yourself as God sees you, if you don’t know personally how God sees you. (I am not talking about what others say, what your church has said, what books say. I am talking about what God specifically says and what you believe about it.)
All problems stem from the same cause: a problem with our relationship with God. There may be layers to it, but healing is intrinsically tied to our relationship with God.
Before you think I am just one of many people come to preach at you and tell you something you have already heard or read, stick with me. I am going to share with you some things that I have learned through the “school of life experience” and what God showed me in the midst of my own darkness. (To read this in greater detail, feel free to read my blog: https://graceinthemoment.wordpress.com/2015/05/18/the-second-part-of-my-testimony-the-second-most-incredible-experience-of-my-life. Warning: it’s heavy reading.)
In Exodus 15:26, it says, “I am the LORD, who heals you.” Julie Ackerman Link says in Our Daily Bread, “…no healing takes place apart from God.”
The reason why so many people are not being “healed” by God is because: they. are. trying. to. do. the. healing. in. their. own. strength.
You might ask, “What about all the prayers I have prayed, all the books I have read, all the sermons I have heard? It’s not like I haven’t tried.”
Yes, YOU have tried.
When your “connection” to God is “broken” or “clogged,” it is impossible to rely on God’s strength to claim victory over whatever negative patterns (thoughts and/or actions) you have going on in your life.
Just praying a prayer, reading books, and listening to sermons does not guarantee or ensure that your relationship with God is where it needs to be.
Our relationship with God starts in the heart/soul — not in outward actions. The outward actions will flow correctly out of a correct heart relationship. (For greater detail on this, see my blog post: https://graceinthemoment.wordpress.com/2015/05/18/being-or-doing.)
For me personally, my relationship with God wasn’t where it needed to be, and I didn’t recognize this at first because I knew (in my head) all the right answers.
The root cause for me began when as a teen I had to face some hardships that I shouldn’t have had to face. In the midst of those hardships, I began to believe that I had to protect myself.
This was the first and greatest lie Satan tries to get us all to believe. It’s the lie, called self-preservation.
If Satan can disconnect us from God, he has succeeded in disconnecting us from our source of power, life, healing, peace, etc…
That’s what Adam & Eve did in the Garden of Eden when they ate the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil. They began to look to themselves to make the decisions for what was best for their lives, instead of to God. Not only did they become disconnected from their source of life, but they got the opposite of what they “wanted.” Instead of getting true “knowledge” of good and evil. They got only their own deceived and twisted view of these things, that only had their own experiences, desires, and logic as its source of interpretation.
When we look to ourselves to interpret “knowledge” and “truth,” we are limited by the scope of our own experiences, desires, and logic.
For me, I began to believe the lie that I had to protect myself, which meant I turned away from God and became, in essence, my own god. I did a lot of the “right” things. My heart was still wanting to do what was right, but my heart wasn’t fully engaged in it. The problem that I hadn’t recognized was that I was trying to walk in God’s power, while still trying to walk in my own. It doesn’t work.
When you are trying to do things in your own strength, self is still in control. When self is in control, there isn’t room for God in your life — not fully. This can be so confusing because you can still have self as your god and yet still be doing all the “right” things.
When self is in control, circumstances will have a way of revealing this and showing the inadequacy of our god (self). Take tragedies: natural disasters, disease, deaths, financial ruin, etc… That’s when people often will cry out to God. They suddenly realize the inadequacy of their own god of self.
For me, it was the simple situation of not having enough strength and wisdom in myself to know how to deal with two other little people who had minds and wills of their own and so many needs. I “tried” to look to God, but I had already begun to believe the lie that I was a failure, not good enough for my kids.
The truth is I wasn’t enough for my kids — not by myself, in my own limited resources of power, strength, and patience.
What I didn’t fully believe was that I did have enough Strength at my disposal — the power that comes from being “more than conquerors through Him that loved us.”
I couldn’t believe the truth because I was not fully trusting God. Remember, what you believe is revealed by what you live — not what you know.
In the book, Think Differently, Live Differently, by Bob Hamp, it says:
“Our thoughts have the power to instigate and even inflame our feelings, but conversely, our feelings have the power to reveal what we really believe about a given situation or person.
… I am convinced that our feelings will always tell us the truth; not necessarily the truth about reality, but the truth about what we believe.”
In recent months, God revealed the specifics that led me to believe the lie that I had to protect myself. Once I finally “saw” when I first believed the lie, I was able to then ask the Lord to forgive me for believing the lie that He wasn’t enough. I also had to forgive a specific person. Once I was able to do those two things, I was finally able to let the “little girl inside me” run to Abba (“Daddy”, God). When I did that, my heart finally came “home.” My relationship with God was healed, and I was able to completely rest in Him.
It was at that time, I felt complete Shalom (true peace that comes from a well-being of soul).
Having my connection to God healed has meant I have been able to be receptive and responsive to His voice and am able to rely on His power. I will catch myself beginning out of habit to repeat old patterns, but God quickly reminds me of the truth. I am able to adjust my thinking and beliefs to accept the truth and to reject the lies. This means keeping a very close connection with God.
In Think Differently, Live Differently, it says, “At the root of any fearful thought is the lie that, somehow, God doesn’t love me.”
In a future blog post, I want to address this very important question, “Where was God when such and such happened?” This may be the key to helping individuals (you) finally be able to trust God. So often we don’t ask this question because we are afraid…
I asked that question recently, listened, and was finally able to hear the answer. I was a blubbering mess, following what God showed me.
I didn’t ask this question or receive the answer until the following three things happened:
- I first acknowledged the lie I had believed: that God wasn’t good enough.
- I then “allowed” God to replace it with the truth: that He is my Provider, Protector, Healer, Truth, and Life.
- I then chose to surrender my heart to God — before knowing the answers to the question I would later pose to Him.
I recently read in a book, and I can’t remember which one because I have been reading so many lately, that freedom and healing isn’t the absence of something but the presence of Someone. Finding freedom from fear isn’t just ignoring the thing you are afraid of or distracting yourself from the fear. Finding freedom is actually replacing it with the true thing itself: Shalom (well-being of soul).
True peace isn’t reliant on our external surroundings: music, scents, colors, physical positions. True peace comes from our spirits being aligned with God’s Spirit, which in turns heals our souls (mind, will, emotions), which in turn manifests itself in our physical bodies. True peace can happen no matter where we are, what we are doing, what is happening around us. True peace isn’t physically-related; it’s spiritually-related.
True peace doesn’t come from emptying our minds of fear. It comes from the Presence of Peace Himself.
Stay tuned for an upcoming blog post on the question, “Where was God?” Until then, may you begin to ask the question, “When did I first begin to believe the lie of self-preservation?”