An excerpt from my devotional I am who you say I am. (this is a sneak peek of what I am working on!)
Years ago I listened to this woman speak and part of her lesson was basically “who told you that?” (believing lies about ourselves). It hit hard because at that moment I realized that I was carrying a lot of self-doubt and negative thoughts about myself. Fast forward a few years and I would like to tell you that I have overcome those feelings of not being good enough. That inadequacy we repeat to ourselves because of something that was said to us or that we perceived and put upon ourselves.
Recently someone said something to me and although she prefaced it with “this was all me” I could not help but feel bad afterward. She felt she needed to tell me that she had been holding a grudge against me for months. She said she knew that it was that she was in a bad place at the time and because of that, she had misread the situation, judged me, and was holding a grudge against me for months.
When she explained what it was it was something very small that had turned into something very big in her mind. I clarified the situation and she said well she already knew that she misread the situation and that it was her perception because at the time she was in a bad place.
I asked her why did she hold onto that for months? She had been feeling bad all this time and this could have been quickly resolved by asking me about it. She said she could not talk to me about it then because she wasn’t in the right place. Meanwhile, I had no idea that that anything was wrong or that she had a problem with me.
So while I “heard “ her I couldn’t help but second guess every interaction I had with this person. I felt horrible that she had felt this way and yet there was nothing I could have done because I didn’t know she was feeling this way. Rationally, I know this in my mind; she even said the same but I couldn’t help but think, did I do anything to cause this? Negative thoughts creep in. (Hello – believing lies about ourselves) What could I have done differently? Am I at fault here, how can I fix this? Does everybody feel this way about me?
Sometimes we act out of our own past hurts and experiences. Sometimes it is not even rational and we know it at the time but we continue to think those negative thoughts (and they grow). We start believing lies about ourselves.
I am reminded that God is not an accuser- he doesn’t keep reminding us what we have done wrong or what we are not:
Not good enough,
Or talented enough.
You will never (fill in the blank) and so much more…
He reminds us who we are:
You are a workmanship,
and wonderfully made,
A child of promise… so much more!
He tells us to capture those thoughts. That means we need to stop perseverating on those negative thoughts and realize that they are not from God.
Who told you that? (believing lies about ourselves)
When you are confronting these negative thoughts can you pinpoint the first time you believed this? Did someone tell you this? Was the person giving feedback or tearing you down? What was the intent? Is the person someone who also encourages and believes in you? Did they have your best interest at heart or were they just lashing out? Was this really meant for you? Did you misread the situation?
Does this align with God’s word? If it doesn’t then why are we listening to it? Many times these negative thoughts are so big because we have taken these “criticisms” and internalized them; we plant them in our hearts and start believing that they are truths. We feed them by going over and over them in our minds until we believe them as truths.
I don’t want to grow false negative thoughts – I want to grow strong truths. Only in the truth can we be healthy and cultivate healthy relationships.
We have to capture those thoughts, evaluate them for what they are, and replace them with the truth. God’s truth about us. Do you have some negative thoughts that you believe to be truths?
has (will have) scriptures and “I am” truth statements to go with them. Truths from God’s word that we need to know and remember, what He says about us. Pick the one negative thought (stop believing lies about ourselves) replace and find the “I am” truth statement that will use to replace it. (like this one below))
Post it somewhere you will see it every day (a mirror is good) until the truth replaces the negative thought (LIE) you are thinking. Start with one (or three)and go from there! Don’t try to work on all of them at once just do one to three and when you have that move on another until you change those negative (lies) thoughts. Soon you will be able to recognize as they come at you – you will be able to capture those thoughts recognize them for what they remember the truths about who you are.
Thank you for taking the time to read this excerpt, somehow the original post and comments were deleted so I am reposting. I would love to hear your thought please feel free to leave me a comment below or email me at rbarakat (at) ritabarakat.com. To find out when this new devotional will be available make sure that you are on my email list here .Don't forget to join us for Mixed Media Monday! Each Monday a new live episode of artsy tips, project, and products! Blessings! Rita