My Thoughts vs. God's Word
By Melissa Taylor

"The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." John 10:10 (NKJV)

Do you ever question if you are good enough? I do – I have all my life. Do you dwell more on what's wrong with you than what's right with you? I do that a lot too.

However, one day I realized I was only surveying myself to get those answers. Well, myself with a little help from my enemy, Satan. For a long time I didn't even recognize him for who he was. My negative thoughts and deceitful suggestions just sounded like my own voice.

The Bible opens with the warning of a serpent slithering into the lives of Adam and Eve, filling their heads with lies that separated them from God. They chose to believe the lies. Jesus, too, was tempted by this liar. He was ready though. He knew the Word of God and that was the only weapon He needed to defeat the evil one.

I know I’m not Jesus, but I can strive to be like Him. I find great comfort in knowing He is with me every step of the way. I can also find great comfort knowing I have the same weapon that He had. I have God's Word available to me in the Bible.

When I compared my negative thoughts to God's Word, I was amazed at the differences:

My thoughts tell me to give up.
God's Word tells me to be committed. Matthew 5:33-37

My thoughts tell me “I need it now!”
God's Word tells me to exercise self-control. Galatians 5:23

My thoughts tell me I deserve to come first, be selfish.
God's Word tells me to have humility and put others first. Philippians 2:3-4

My thoughts tell me to get mad and hold a grudge.
God's Word says forgive as many times as it takes. Matthew 18:21-22

My thoughts tell me to seek revenge.
God's Word tells me to be a peacemaker. Romans 12:18-19

My thoughts tell me take all the credit.
God's Word tells me to glorify Jesus Christ. John 17:5

My thoughts tell me I need to look good on the outside and no one will notice the ugly inside.
God's Word tells me to be pure on the inside and the outside won't even matter. Proverbs 31:30

My thoughts tell me I'm ugly
.
God's Word tells me I'm wonderfully made. Psalm 139:14

My thoughts tell me I'm all alone and no one understands me.

God's Word tells me He will never leave me and He knows the plans He has for me. Deuteronomy 31:6, Jeremiah 29:11

My thoughts tell me that I'm just not good enough.

God's Word tells me that I'm His gift to the world and that I was created in His image. Psalm 127:3, Genesis 1:26

I learned the lies must be replaced with Words that are true. That way, when Satan’s lies slither back into my head, I'm ready and I can defeat the enemy.

I admit this has been a challenge for me. I'm so thankful that: I have friends in place who know I struggle with this to remind me of my true identity; I was brave enough to seek counseling when I needed help; I learned that anxiety and depression were not always my fault and I was open to receive medical attention from a professional in this area; my family, especially my husband, who stood beside me even when I was miserable to be around; and, each time I felt like quitting or giving up, I never did.

I don't want to waste time that God has given me to live with negative thoughts about myself and lies that aren't true. That only keeps me from Him and keeps me from the work He has purposed me for. Evaluate your thoughts. Condemning thoughts are not from God. Renew your mind with the Word of God. Do not allow the enemy to separate you from the love of God and the life that was meant for you.

Dear Lord, Fill me with Your Word so that I can live in freedom. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do You Know Him?

Becoming a Woman Who Listens to God by Sharon Jaynes

Hope in the Midst of Depression: How to Embrace Life Again by Mary Southerland

Visit Melissa’s blog: I Am Beautiful

Application Steps:
Read the verses in this devotion and write down what God's Word says.

Reflections:
Are your thoughts reflective of who you really are?

Do you look at yourself the way God looks at you?

Power Verses:
Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things." (NIV)

Romans 8:1, "Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." (NIV)


20 Comments:

Anonymous Debby said...

You have no idea how much I needed your message today. I have been completely beating myself up and feeling worthless, and I needed a reminder from God's word of who I am in Him. Thank you, thank you, thank you for writing this.

Blogger Brandi said...

I have to agree with Debby. I, too, really needed this. I feel so unworthy to do what God has my family doing. Today we are getting 8 teenage girls... we are becoming house parents at a children's home in Atlanta. I am struggling with whether I will be the mom that these girls need... but I just need to be Jesus to these girls, and He will work it out. Also, I struggle with pleasing my husband - and Satan lies to me telling me that I am not what Jason wants. Thank you for reminding me that that little voice in my head isn't just me... it's the evil one. thanks again so much.

Anonymous Amaris said...

I have struggled with flaming arrows from The Enemy for years. One of the verses that has helped to set this captive free (although it is a daily struggle), is Hebrews 4:12 - "For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."(NIV) This verse tells me that no matter what ugly thought (flaming arrow) enters my mind, that my God knows the REAL me, and that gives me an immeasurable amount of peace to counteract the anxieties caused by this type of warfare. Our struggle really takes place on the battlefield of the mind.
You have encouraged me with your post today. I have felt alone in this (particular type of) struggle for so long. Philippians 4:8, Deuteronomy 31:6, Jeremiah 29:11 as well as Isaiah 51:7,12-16... are in my own personal arsenal, and II Corinthians 10:3-5 says that "For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ." In Christ we have the victory - we just have to keep refuting the lies in the name of Jesus, and replace them with Truth from His Word.

Blogger Tracey said...

Thank you so much for posting this message. I believe that God is talking directly to me through this message. I have been struggling with insecurity over everything lately...my job, my friends, my church. Feeling that I am alone and not worth having as a friend, an employee and definately not worthy enough to even step foot in the house of God. In my head I keep telling myself that this is Satan trying to divide my life into little pieces rather than being whole and unified but my insecurity seems to constantly take over. Your words have really encouraged me and I will be reading them over and over again. Thank you so much!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I, too, needed to hear this message today. God has reminded me that to use His Word to fend off the attacks of the enemy, I have to KNOW His Word. And to KNOW His Word, I have to be IN His Word daily.

Thank you for allowing God to use you to speak to so many of us who struggle with thoughts from the enemy. God bless!

Blogger sunshineperri said...

Thank you for this wonderful message that I am worthy!! It seems that Satan is very busy filling our heads with unworthyness. It is so nice to know that we are not alone. I have printed out your list of thoughts and bible verses to show they are untrue! I will be posting them all over my home as my reminder!!
Satan has been trying to tell me that I didn't do enough for my Mom when she was dying of Cancer, but Jesus and I know that I did.
Thank you for the reassurance that I am worthy!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks so much for the encouragement today, i too have experience the words you wrote, it seems everytime i go through this period God always opens a door i never thought could open. the enemy knows are weakness but i am reminded when i am weak the Jesus is made Strong.

Anonymous Donna said...

This is exactly what I have been going through for the last 5 months since I was laid off my job and haven't been able to fine a new job. I think is has to be me; I'm not good enough; nobody likes me; I'll never find another job; I'll just give up. Well today's message changed that! I know those are Satan's words - not God's and he doesn't want me to think them. Today I will pray more and be more patient for he knows my needs. Only God knows when the perfect time is to answer my prayers.
Thank you for today's encouragement. I needed that.

Anonymous Jeannie said...

Wonderful message today. I have struggled with this also over the years and have just realized God's truth by taping into various resources such as P31, books offered on your site and also Max Lucado's writings. Keep them coming ladies! You are a blessing.

PS I wonder if there is any way you could add a link on your devotions to be able to directly forward to friends who are not subscribed to your site. This would be wonderful.

Hummm.. I thought it was just me. I've struggled in this area for YEARS!! I never understood why it was so hard for me to feel worthy of any positive thought about myself. I was constantly in this space mentally, until I learned to lean on the Lord. I thank you so much for this post because although I don't struggle daily as I used to, sometimes I find myself there. I also thank you for the scriptures. I'm a new Christian and just learning to lean on the Word and I really appreciate you sharing the scriptures that help...

Blogger Jen said...

This really encouraged me as well!! Thank you for this!!! It is so awesome to know that we are not alone in this struggle!! Thanks again Melissa!!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes! I really needed this message also. Sometimes we tend to forget how to use our spiritual weapons and I refuse to go down defeated,in Jesus' name! The Word is our weapon and I am so glad I am not the only one who struggles with this one. Having survived a nervous breakdown and suicide attempt,i know of the grace of God.God's Word did heal me, and He is still working in my life! To Him be the glory forever,amen!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this reminder today. I was in desperate need of it! I ran across the following in my morning devotions and as soon as I read it....my self-deafeating thoughts were replaced with a sense of peace...
"Praise the Lord, O my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his
holy name.
Praise the Lord, O my soul
and forget not all his benefits-
who forgives all your sins and
heals all your deseases, who
redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and
compassion, who satisfies your
desires with good things so
that your youth is renewed like
the eagles." - Psalm 103:1-5


I must constantly remind myself of all his benefits and how he redeems my life from the pit (my self defeateing thoughts) He loves me...I in turn must love myself and see myslef the way he sees me. thank you once again, Melissa...you hit the nail right on the head again!

Julie

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have tears of joy running down my face as I type this because I was struggling with these same thoughts to day and God used you to meet my need at the exact moment I needed it.
When I get just a glimpse of his glory, I am so amazed!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you. I could have written most all of this myself...The words in my head "NEVER GOOD ENOUGH" seem to be on repeat...and badger me day by day.

I have asked God just recently to renew my mind...some say that we are supposed to do this for ourselves...but sometimes when you are down/depressed/anxious...it seems like an impossible task. Just lifting your head is a burden.

In the morning I wake up with negative thoughts. I try to fight them, but some days they get me down. I have struggled with depression/anxiety for years. I have gone to a little counseling (what I could afford)...have tried medications...and had lots of prayer. I have felt like I am destined to be "down" forever...until heaven. I am so tired of it (especially lately). I don't want to be a "depressed person"...any more!!!

Yes, I dwell on what's wrong with me, and with others and with situations. I have asked, begged, pleaded for help...but it appears that not much is around. I have asked God to show me what to do, but feel so distant from Him.

I have been able to get through most days...and my kids are a blessing as well as my husband (although I think he has given up on me getting better).
I wonder how a person who has followed the LORD for as many years as I have could continue to struggle with this stuff. I have tried to "forgive, move on, pray, read the Bible, read books (help), go to pastors for counsel and prayer, etc. etc. Yet, here I am still struggling.

I just need direction...I just need God to give me a clear picture of what He is wanting me to do...

This whole thing pulls me inside myself too often...and then I feel worse about myself for being selfish. It is a vicious cycle.

I ask your prayers...and I pray for each of you who is struggling as well...may the LORD make us into 'wounded healers'...in His Name...May He bring beauty from the ashes of our lives....May we not have to waste one more day bound up in the lies of the enemy...May the LORD make us free indeed!

Blogger Kate said...

This post moved me. I've been struggling with this for so long... I think I need to print this and post it somewhere I'll see it often.

Thank you,
~Kate
Which Proverbs 14:1 Woman?
http://www.proverbs14-1.blogspot.com

Blogger Lesley said...

Thank you for having the courage to be so honest. It is clear from all the other comments that none of us is alone and I find it so powerful that all our struggles have a common source and Jesus already defeated him. I struggle with insecurity as I finish college and it's so obvious to see satan rampant in our world today and it really scares me sometimes. Thank you for reminding me that the Lord is with us always and has designated us for a purpose to shine our lights amongst the darkness :)

Anonymous Debby said...

To "Anonymous":
Hang in there. I am praying for you, as I am sure others who have read this are. I have struggled with anxiety and depression for years as well and I know the despair you are feeling. I did all the things you did to be healed, including prayer, Bible meditation, and many times just begging to God. I finally found a Christian counselor who helped me through counseling and medication. I used to think that it was my fault I had this condition. When my counselor (Christian) suggested meds, I did not want to try them. I said "my thoughts got me into this, and my thoughts, and Jesus, can get me out". She reminded me that I have a physiological problem that affects my thoughts, so I needed outside help with them. Also, it was God who enabled healers (physicians) to do what they do, and to be thankful that there are healing medications out there.
I can't say I never struggle anymore. I have good days and bad, but definitely no more suicidal and "dark" days where I cannot even move. I would encourage you to keep seeing help until you find it. God bless and keep you.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

THIS WAS ONE OF THE MOST POWERFUL MESSAGES I HAVE EVER READ AND IT IS JUST WHAT I NEEDED TODAY. I HAVE A LOT OF GREAT IDEAS AND AM IN NEED OF THE FAITH TO CARRY THEM OUT AND SEE THEM COMPLETED. I THANK YOU FOR THIS POWERFUL WORD OF ENCOURAGEMENT AND I BELIEVE I CAN DO ALL THING THROUGH CHRIST THAT STRENGTHENS ME. I AM SOMEBODY EVEN THOUGH SOMETIMES INSIDE I FEEL SO LOST. THANK YOU FOR YOUR LOVE AND FOR THESE UPLIFTING WORDS OF WISDOM. THEY ARE GREATLY APPRECIATED.

Depressive disorders make one feel exhausted, worthless, helpless, and hopeless. Such negative thoughts and feelings make some people feel like giving up. It is important to realize that these negative views are part of the depression and typically do not accurately reflect the actual circumstances. http://www.xanax-effects.com/

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