Wednesday, June 9, 2010

"I feel sad today please LIKE me to make me happy"

I keep seeing this FACEBOOK group popping up on my news feed "I feel sad today please LIKE me to make me happy" and it has been puzzling to me. Just now I clicked on it to see the FB page, but got an error message that it was unavailable. Wow. Now there's a sermon.

Being happy with ourselves cannot come from whether other people like us or not. That satisfaction is simply unavailable. Because no matter how many people "like" us, if we are only cheered from our sadness by other people liking us, we are going to be a miserable lot.

We weren't designed to draw our self-worth from other people, but from God. We can draw some measure of comfort from the people who "like" us but if we belong to God, He is a jealous God and will not allow us to be satisfied with anything less than the knowledge of His love and acceptance of us.

Tell me. Do you have people in your life who are like family to you - long-term relationships - that every time you get to feeling a little good about yourself are there to remind you how you don't live up to their expectations? How you are a disappointment, lacking in their eyes?

No matter how many people press the "like" button on your Facebook page, they are still they to remind you their vaulted opinion of you is not so high.

Hey, God bless 'em, but their opinion is not the one that counts. I am reminded of a warfare scripture - and believe me - when you are trying to draw your self-worth from the esteem of others instead of from God, it is spiritual warfare being waged over your mind, heart and soul!

2 Corinthians 10:5 says we are to wage spiritual warfare by "Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Messiah."

Let me break it down to you how this works when people close to us are the ever-present voice of discouragement about who we are as a person. It is human tendency to make the opinion of other people - our family, our friends, our associates in work or the circles we move in - more exalted than they should be. The reason is that we carry around the seed of fallen humanity that is completely insecure about ourselves as a person.

How many times have you heard an anointed minister of God admit that deep down inside they are always wondering when people in the pews are going to figure out they are not so wonderful? How many times have you heard a rock star or a movie star admit that they may get thousands of rave reviews for their performance but it is the bad reviews that stick with them and chew on their sense of worth?

That is because no matter who we are, God will not allow us to be fully satisfied with the love, appreciation, adoration or approval of fellow human beings. He is a jealous God and He will not allow us to become fully satisfied if we try to draw our sense of worth from them and not Him.

Now God did not create us to be islands, isolated from healthy human relationships. Nor did He create us as rocks, with no need for the exchange of human emotion and contact. He wants us to have all of that, but He wants us to have it in perspective so we will not be subject to the control of others in our lives, but under His control.

Here is the challenge in 2 Cor 10:5. The spiritual battle is over what we believe: Is it what God says about us, or is it what the people who are always communicating their disappointment in us? Whether they say it to our face, behind our back or just in ample disapproving looks, their opinion is not more true, important or valid than what God says. Listen right now and He will tell you: That is right!

I have been on a long journey with learning that no matter what anyone says, no matter what obstacles pop up along my life path, I can trust that what God says about me is true.

How do I know what God says about me? It is in His love letter to me beginning in Genesis and ending in Revelation. He is the consistent Voice of love, expressing to me what He thinks about me - what value I have to Him no matter what water is under the bridge and no matter how high the mountain, He has faith that I can scale it listening to Him.

If I quiet the voices of what others have said about me in my head, then I can hear Him telling me anew what He thinks about me. Sometimes that includes correction, but it never leaves me hopeless, dejected or like I am doomed.

I just wanted to say to anyone who is struggling today with anyone that conveys disappointment and disapproval of you, their opinion is flawed. Flawed because it exalts itself against the knowledge of God and against His truth about you. Don't make the opinion of one human being or 1,000 human beings more important to you than God's opinion. You are the work of HIS hands, not those who stand back shaking their heads and muttering 'tsk,tsk' under their breaths with merciless eyes fixed on you.

"Casting down imaginations" - imaginations are what people may imagine you are, but they don't see the heart as God does. So our warfare becomes not to replay their unkind or unfair disapproving comments over and over in our minds. Instead we cast those thoughts down and take them captive to the obedience of Messiah.

When we take a thought captive that means we don't let it roam freely in our minds all day. We put a rope on that sucker and kick it out of the pen our thoughts are locked up in. We are the ones that allow or disallow the thoughts roaming around in our thought life. We must take thoughts captive, making our thought life obedient to Messiah.

Every time we hang our head (or our heart) in shame at the negative vibes certain people seem to always send our way, in essence we are bowing our knee to that estimation of us. We should only bow our knee the Lord's estimation of us. Only He has the right to tell us who we are.

But do you see it? We GIVE that right to whomever we choose to listen to. If it is the crowd that loves to shame us or negate us - we are giving them the right to be the ruling voice over us.

If we are ever going to be all that we can in the Lord, we have to stop bowing our knee to those who don't have our best interests in their hearts. I'm not saying we sever all those relationships like the world teaches (severing "toxic relationships"), but I am saying that we get a Heavenly perspective and priority about it.

"Casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God." We begin to wage this warfare by casting down those disapproving comments and renewing our mind with the knowledge of God."

You can be everything that God says His children can be in Messiah Yeshua. You are no exception to this rule. It is not everyone EXCEPT you. YOU are EVERYthing He says you are.