Points to Ponder: The self-deception: "I'm Not Good Enough"
Points to Ponder
The self-deception: "I'm Not Good Enough"
How does one deal with ego issues? It's very freeing when you realize that your own ego is obstructing your view of reality. Do you long for approval, feel starved for attention, or sense unworthiness in yourself? Perhaps it's too simplistic to say this, but once you see that these debilitating feelings are rooted in you and not in someone else, then you can find relief. If we are deceived into thinking that something (or someone) outside of ourselves "makes me feel" worthless, useless, unlovable, incompetent, etc. then we will forever try to find the solution outside of ourselves.
We are all equal in the basics. Every human being is made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27); you can't do much better than that. No one is excluded. God says that even those born with disabilities are His design and creation (Exodus 4:11). And in the areas of weakness (we all have some), He can glorify Himself if we allow Him to use us:
"My grace is sufficient for you for My strength is made perfect (complete) in weakness" (1 Corinthians 12:9).
There are inherent lacks in all of us. "All have sinned and fall short of the glory (standard) of God" (Romans 3:23); but even though we are deficient in multiple ways, God so loved us that He interceded on our behalf to lift us up.
"God demonstrated His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8).
Of course this is speaking to believers in Jesus Christ. As the gospel says, as many as will receive Him, "to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name" (John 1:12).
It can comfort the bruised ego and strengthen the weak ego, when you realize that your worth has been weighed by the love of God. He knows our weaknesses and undergirds us with "grace to help in time of need" (Hebrews 4:16).
Do you notice in the gospels that Jesus debated with and chastised the religious people? Those who performed and relied on their own appearance of righteousness were despised by Him. Their service to God was not about loving God first, or lifting up His name in joyous praise. It was a religion of "Look at me." In an odd sort of twist, the sense of unworthiness that holds you back is also a religion of "Look at me." Neither God nor His glory are at the center of what you are claiming to serve. You have set a standard that according to your judgment you have not attained. So you withdraw your availability to be used of God.
It is a self-deception, perceiving yourself as noble, you serve society by not inflicting yourself upon others. I have seen this all too many times, especially in order persons. They feel rejected by the world around them; yet in reality they have projected upon others an attitude that really is their own. Just as the ten spies determined that Israel could not take the Promised Land, even though God had given it into their hands.
"...we were like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight" (Numbers 13:33).
They justified their disobedience and complacency with a self-centered excuse. A whole generation missed a God-given opportunity because their elders put more value on their own judgment than on God's sovereignty.
So, are you struggling with feelings of worthlessness, and uselessness? Are you tempted to stay away from fellowship, avoid commitment, and shun close relationships outside your protective boundaries?
Recognizing your weaknesses is a good start. But you don't stake a claim and fence yourself in. What are you protecting yourself from - grace?
This tendency to practice a religion of "look at me" denies an entry way for God's grace. If your standard of righteousness, worthiness, godliness is no higher than your meager standard, you have said in effect to God: "Your grace is not sufficient for me."
Get your SELF out of the way and let God have you - all of you. No conditions. No excuses. No delay.
"God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you" (1 Peter 5:5b-7).
Points to Ponder is a series of occasional articles written by Rev. Dennis Whitmore, Pastor of Hilltop Christian Fellowship, 12624 Trinity Church Drive, Clear Spring, MD (1/4 mile east of Clear Spring on Rt. 40). Listen to Pastor Dennis on WJEJ-1240 AM, Tues and Thurs, at 10:45am and 7:50pm, both days. www.hilltopchristianfellowship.com.