Friday, December 11, 2009

"Stop It."

Our Pastor talked about how Jesus was wonderful counselor this past weekend at church.

Pastor introduced his sermon with a video that blew me away. I found a shortened version of it that gets to the point.

I laughed too; it was very funny, but also true. That girl was me for a long time. All the excuses and the lies I told myself for much of my life, the blame that I put on others and on myself. Negative self-talk, depression, obsessive-compulsive, suicidal thoughts, anger, helpless, all of it.

Please don’t misunderstand. I am certainly not saying that there isn’t a time and a place for therapy and even the initiation of medications and possibly hospitalization when our quality of life and ability to function is impacted. I have had years of therapy, some great and some not so great, but there came a point that no matter how long my therapist and I might discuss something, or break it down, dissect it, ultimately the decision was mine and I had to chose what I was going to think and what actions I was going to take.

Jesus never negotiated, he never begged, and he never pleaded with anyone. With the woman who was caught in the act of adultery and brought before Jesus, (John 8), He questioned the crowd, wrote in the sand, and then looked up and gave her two things, a gift and command.

“And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more” (John 8:11)

“Neither do I condemn thee” Looking back now I see where my anger, self-pity, depression, all the dark were feelings of self-condemnation. Guilt and anger at myself for mistakes I had made and destructive actions I had taken. I allowed Satan to get a stronghold in my thoughts and convince me that there was no help for me and that there was no hope for me (I didn’t know it was Satan at the time. When you don’t understand how powerful God’s love is, it’s hard to grasp how persuasive the king of lies is).

I didn’t understand God’s love for me. God doesn’t condemn his children to hell; we condemn ourselves when we refuse to receive the gift He has given us.

Jesus gave the woman a gift by not condemning her, but then He gave her instructions…”go, and sin no more.”

They didn’t sit down and talk about it some more. He didn’t tell her to go on Oprah and discuss why she felt the need to be in an adulterous relationship. He didn’t pat her head and look for someone or something in her past to blame. He told her to “go”, action verb, get up, walk away, move forward, don’t just stand still, but go, live your life, continue on…BUT…”sin no more”. Don’t repeat you’re past mistakes, don’t do it again, in other words…Stop It! (My friend Karen talks more about Jesus, the Wonderful Counselor here, go check it out, but be sure to come back!)

I had to come to the realization that the only way I was going to be able to move forward in my life, live my life, and find hope, joy and happiness was if I stopped blaming, being angry, and stopped making excuses. I had to stop it.

What are you doing that you need to stop? (Take a minute right now and think about it.)

Depression, anger, bitterness, sadness, acts of self-destruction. Feelings that we can look at, hold under a microscope, peel back layer by layer, point the blame at others or even at ourselves. Ultimately we have to come to the realization that whatever came before is over and done, there is no looking back, and that we must stop it so that we can move forward and live this life we have been given. If we are still breathing then God has a job for us to do, but we will not be able to DO IT if we don’t STOP IT.

God, thank you for forgiving me. Help me to stop those things that I do that are not for your glory and help me to move forward and sin no more. In God’s name we pray. Amen.


Anonymous said...

That's strong , Leigh ! " When you don't understand how powerful God's love is , it's hard to grasp how persuasive the king of lies is" . Even as believers we still have moments of weakness that Satan uses to separate us from God . Our walk with Christ was never promised to be easy . We will be tempted and tried. . . and sometimes we may listen to those lies a little longer than we should . But Thank God He is ALWAYS there to redirect our path ~ and unending source of hope and light !

Love you ~ Stephanie

Susanne said...

Great job Leigh!! "Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9
We have to "STOP IT" and trust God and press forward for the ultimate goal... rejoicing at the feet of Jesus!