I've had a few days of self-doubt. I call it "ministry hangover," because it usually follows great works of God in our church. This time it is no different.
Last week held some pretty special ministry moments. There are details that I hope to share later. Right now, all I can say is that God moved. I got to see God save people, and I was able to see God's people obey Him in profound ways. I was reminded in the deepest and most profound ways how awesome God is.
The Enemy doesn't like this. He doesn't want us to live confident of God's power in us. The more we allow him to draw our attention to self-doubt and condemnation, the more we ignore the profound power of God. When that happens, we are rendered ineffective which is exactly what he wants.
For the Christian, condemnation can come from self or from Satan, never from Christ. Consider the fact that only one of the three has never lied. I advise heeding only the words of the honest one.
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. -Romans8:1
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. -1 John 1:9
The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. -Romans 16:20a
For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. -Philippians 2:13
So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. -John 8:36
Take some time to think about the thoughts running through your mind today. Are you dwelling on the greatness of God and the freedom you have in Him or is your mind askew with repetitious self condemnation? Take your thoughts captive today. Make them turn toward the greatness of God and your freedom in Him.
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. -2 Corinthians 10:5
They thoughts don't own you. Jesus does, and He has already set you free.
Special Note: There are times when the Holy Spirit convicts the Christian of sin. This is different than condemnation. Condemnation is focused on self, our flaws, feelings of worthlessness, and screw ups. It is often repetitions and unclear. Conviction is different in that it focuses on God and His holiness. The Holy Spirit doesn't bring confusion. It is part of His nature to illuminate. His conviction is clear (John 16:8), and it focus on God's holiness more than on you. Rather than hopelessly condemn, the Spirit's conviction draws us to God's holiness, clearly identifying sin while offering forgiveness, peace, and victory. If you are feeling condemnation and are unsure what to do about it, then it is probably from self or the enemy (By the way, believing Satan's lies is taking part in his work--Don't!). However, if you are feeling conviction, it will always be clear what you have done and what you need to do. God doesn't bring condemnation or confusion. He brings conviction, clarity, and freedom.