Thursday, February 21, 2013

Lie Four: You Are Your Past

By Julie Gernand
Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman. –Tammy Wynette
Satan lies to us big time about this one – the past.

You may be familiar with the website titled “I Am Second”. This wonderful ministry interviews people from all walks of life about their life stories and decisions to follow Christ.

Take 5 minutes to listen to Victoria Childress’s story.

Pretty cool, huh?

This is what the “I Am Second” website has to say about Victoria:

“Growing up in a broken home without the love that most people take for granted, Victoria Childress embraced her emotional pain by adding physical pain. Cutting words on her arms in the dark proved a temporary crutch that was leading her down the dangerous path towards suicide. “With seemingly nothing to live for, why live at all?”

The wise counsel of a physician started the healing process for Victoria, eventually leading to true discovery about the reason for living, and the joy and happiness that results.  Her story testifies that when someone reaches out with the question, “God, if you are real, can you help me,” He will show up!

Victoria was stuck. Before God spoke through her doctor and he reminded her of the joy of living, she was engrossed in what the past had held. To her, she was worth what she had experienced – lack of love and deep sadness. She longed for what others had. She believed the lie that her past dictated exactly what her future would become.

Victoria believed the lie that she was her past. She believed she was worth what she had experienced.

But the Lord rescues us from this blatant fallacy.

Have you ever felt like Victoria?

I know one woman who did. Her story is found is chapter 4 of the book of John:

7 A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” 8 (For his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.) 9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) 10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” 11 The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and his livestock.” 13 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” 15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water.”

Let’s take a second to realize all of the awesome things Jesus does in this passage:

ONE: Firstly, Jesus (a Jew) took the time to speak to a Samaritan woman in a public place. Not only did Jewish people and Samaritans rarely speak to one another, but a she was a woman! In Jesus’s day, Jewish leaders did not allow Jewish men to speak to women in public (www.bible.org). Jesus showed us in this instance that he was not concerned with the ideas of “religious” men, but concerned for the well-being of people.

TWO: Jesus knew this woman’s story. He knew that she lived a promiscuous lifestyle, and that she had been with many men. He didn’t care. He shared His love with her anyway: 13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
Jesus told her that He was the Living Water, the Messiah promised to save all who loved Him. And that included women such as this one, whose pasts were full of darkness.

THREE: Jesus shows us through this passage that even the seemingly impossible can be made whole through Him. Our pasts may be full of despair, self-hatred, or promiscuity, but the Lord cleanses us from this.

Do not believe that you are your past. The past is gone, and it does not dictate who you are.

TRUTH: You are a cleansed, forgiven, and redeemed child of the living God!

Have you ever stopped to see yourself through the eyes of Jesus?

It’s pretty amazing.

For where you have seen shame, doubt, and darkness, the Lord sees one of his own: a beloved and saved dear daughter.

Lord, Forgive us when we see ourselves through the world’s eyes. So often we forget that what has happened to us long ago does not dictate how you see us or value us. Help us to realize this truth. We know that we are never “stuck” in one place with you at the helm. You are truly our wonderful savior!

Amen.

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