Have you ever confessed that you have been working on yourself as if you needed some type of repair? Or, have you used phrases such as, “I’m trying to be better, or I’m a work in progress?” Well, these things may actually be true in some sense. We all could benefit from some revisions, some adjustments I suppose. After all, we are all imperfect creatures in one way or another. But, have you ever considered that you might be just fine exactly the way you are? Behind all of our noble and sincere efforts to be better, hides an enemy whose goal is to make us feel less than who we actually are. He assaults our hearts with accusations and endeavors to write a narrative about our lives that isn’t true. He seeks to point out what is wrong with us instead of all the things that are right. And, in the end, we end up feeling bad about ourselves and searching for ways to improve. So the question is, are you really in need of repair or have you simply been focusing on the wrong stuff?
Almost since the beginning of the world we have all been subjected to an enemy that works in secret. Our opponent knows that in order to defeat us, he has to convince of things that are not true. In his hatred for God and all that is good, he takes his anger out on God’s creation and does so by working people over in their thought life to the point that they start to believe those wrong things are true. It is not by accident that most people feel unworthy before God and do all sorts of things in an attempt to improve their standing. People have magnified their faults and their failings above God and have in error taken those false ideas unto themselves. Nobody feels good enough and almost no-one maintains a healthy view concerning who they are. Instead people become consumed with themselves and drive themselves to the brink to be better, to get better, all the while being ignorant of the truth that God, in the work of His son, has already made them better. People, good people, have learned to accept the falsehoods, not knowing any better, and in so doing carry around a perpetual need for improvement in their hearts. Instead of accepting the value God has given them, they seek to earn their value by the things that they do; by their accomplishments; by their societal standing. Meanwhile, deep down in their hearts, they still feel inferior and act as if something is always wrong with them. It never dawned on them that the things they are thinking, the words they are considering, the ideas they hold about themselves have been manipulated and twisted. People are not inherently evil, the adversary is evil. The wrongs that people do are always due to the influence of evil in one capacity or another. If there were no evil there would be no sin, no error, no mistakes. But, there is evil and it is that same evil that accuses you of being something you are not. Evil accuses you of being what it is. You are not broken and in need of repair.
The function of evil is perhaps the most misunderstood thing in the world. God does not convict you of sin, evil does. God does not exist to point out your shortcomings and remind you of your failures, evil does that. God is not behind all of that self-focus and sin-consciousness that plagues you day by day, evil is. In not knowing or understanding the nature of God versus the nature of evil, mankind is forever subjected to lies and deceptions aimed at breaking him down first in his mind, then later in his heart. Once those falsehoods have been inculcated into your heart, you will struggle to believe God for even the most simple things in life. Your so-called unworthiness will render you afraid and helpless against an opponent that only wants to hurt you, steal from you and ultimately defeat you. The spiritual competition that rages demands that you pay attention and recognize what is going on. People spend their entire lives plagued by the mistakes of their past accepting full and complete responsibility for them. They learn, by endless repetition, to focus on their shortcomings and foibles never actually considering that all that was ever wrong with them has been remedied by God in the perfect life of His son. In this, though they may have been deeply broken, they are broken no longer and in need of no revision whatsoever. Sure there will always be more to learn, adjustments to make, but in their heart and in their spirit they have been completely repaired and made pure. What a revelation to the heart of man. My friend, you do not have to try and fix yourself, you have already been fixed.
From your heart, as the Bible says, proceed the issues of your life. Your life will be both blessed and cursed by those things you carry in your heart. When you spend your days dragging around all that is wrong with you; all of your shortcomings; all of your past failures, you weaken and damage your own heart. You look for and expect bad things because you have been convinced that you deserve it. When good happens upon you, instead of enjoying it, you look askance waiting for the trouble that will surely follow. In this you have been deceived. The deception will always drive your focus back to yourself; to the things you may be doing wrong and to things you should be doing that you are not doing. Instead of looking at God with great gratitude and humility, your focus will be squarely upon yourself and your imperfections. And by doing so, you have been artfully tricked into looking in the wrong places. And sadly, the more you delve into the imperfection of your human flesh, the more things not to like will you discover. This is not God’s will for your life. God has given you complete and perfect freedom and He did it by the works of another man. You are not in dire need of repair as you have been told (often), you need to change what you have been looking at instead. Focus on God’s perfection!
The idea that humans have great need of repair is a plague that assaults all of mankind. Have you ever thought that maybe you aren’t so bad? Maybe the mistakes you have made pale in comparison to all of the good things you have done. Maybe you aren’t secretly evil and looking to do bad things or things that hurt other people. Likely, you are just the opposite. The fact that you actually care about what is right informs you that the former cannot be true. Yet, the accuser, your personal adversary, seeks to convince you otherwise. The solution to this dilemma isn’t to work harder on yourself, garner more discipline, exert more effort. Doing so simply admits the error of your starting premise; namely that something is wrong with you. Instead of working harder on yourself, the remedy is to turn your attention away from yourself. Stop analyzing yourself; your motives; your every move. Stop it! Every time you consider and entertain the thought that God hasn’t made you perfect, you will feel the need to add to God’s already finished work. And, you cannot get more finished than finished! Put your focus on God and what He says is true. Embrace who He has made you to be, no matter how much of a stinker you were. Stop judging yourself, comparing yourself, and berating yourself. There is something behind every wrong done and that someone isn’t you. Thank God you have already been repaired.
My dear friends, it is time to step off the treadmill of the world and start living how God wants you to live. You have been made free in every conceivable sense. Live your life and enjoy your life, even the bad days. Accept and embrace your imperfections knowing that you are just like the rest of us. Put an end to your consideration of the false narrative and believe who God says you are instead. Jesus Christ was the ultimate sacrifice for you. You may as well enjoy what he did. After all, that is what he died for! Are you in need of repair? I should say not. You are wonderful just the way you are…
Just some good thoughts…