Jeremiah 1: 5

Glyn & Sophia Barrett
Glyn & Sophia Barrett

A precursor to the next seven days.remember as a child you would hear something at the playground and promptly relay that information to your parents as soon as you got home. The topic varied but the most common was 'where babies came from'. You know the scenario, you run home greatly enlightened by this new information, you're excited of the prospect of telling your parents who evidently need to know, only to be faced with an unexpected reaction. There is no excitement just amused glances and one inevitably asks the age old question, 'Who told you that?!'

A good question. Most of us go around believing a whole lot of stuff about our lives that is not true. Where the information comes from is not important, the fact is that we believe it, operate our lives by it, and it simply is not true. The next seven 'devotionals' or rather 'challenges' pose that very question, 'who told you that?!' to seven commonly held beliefs and offers an opportunity for you to replace the lie with the truth. Proceed, if you dare.

Glyn and Sophia Barrett

1. Who told you your destiny was tomorrow?!
Destiny is one of those buzz words that no one seems to be able to define when or where it happens let alone what it is. It's a bit like becoming an adult, when does the transportation from child to adult actually happen? Destiny began even before we were in the womb. Jeremiah 1: 5 says "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;..." Instead of waiting for something mystical to happen that propels you into your 'destiny' just kick into the purposes of God today. What are the purposes of God exactly? Today look around you with the knowledge that you have been chosen even before you were born and the world will be awash with possibility and purpose.

2. Who told you that you needed permission to be a man/woman of God?
We live in a very ordered society. We live respecting the echelons of authority that exist all around us. We respect our parents because they wear the badge 'parent'. We respect our teachers because they wear the badge or title 'teacher', and so it goes on. The only problem is that we think we need a badge to rise up and be the awesome person God has called us to be. You don't need a badge, a title, a piece of paper, or recognition from any human being, you've got your 'green light' from your heavenly Father who tells you you're the salt of the earth, the light of the world, and a city on a hill. He says "...let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." (Matt 5: 13-16) Stop waiting for your badge, title, and personal confetti throwing parade. This is your day to shine so SHINE.

3. Who told you the grass was greener on the other side?
If we had a pound for every time people asked why we would come from Australia to live in England we would be very rich. Why do humans assume life is better elsewhere? It's a lie that leaves you discontent with where you are right now and therefore ineffective. It's like flying a plane and leaving it on auto pilot. You're moving but you can't do anything truly great. You can't conduct evasive manoeuvres, or perform any spectacular stunts. You can only do that when you love where you are and you're fully engaged in what you are doing. If you think moving will solve your problems think again. Ps 16: 5, 6 says "...The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places, surely I have a delightful inheritance". The best place for you is right where you are for two reasons, the first is that you're there and the second is that God is right there with you. That's a combination that guarantees an awesome, faith filled, boundary-loving day. Look up. It's a great day for flying.

4. Who told you that you had to fight your own corner?
We're told it's a dog eat dog world. If you don't fight for yourself no one else will. The truth is we have a God who fights for us. In 1Sam 17: 47 David said '.the battle is the Lords' as he faced off Goliath. How awesome is it knowing that every struggle you have and are going to have, Jesus has already fought and won. Life is not out to get you, you are out to get life with the confidence of someone who has nothing to lose. Even though we still have to tackle situations and issues that face us, we do so from a position of confidence knowing success is all over us because God has already fought for us and made a way. Today walk with a strut in your step, nothing is too big or too hard, because you're already a winner.

5. Who told you to wait for a better day?
Most of us are looking for the perfect day to be the person that God wants us to be or do something that God wants us to do. We're waiting for when we're thinner, married, employed, promoted, more confident, better qualified, and wiser. We're waiting for the planets to be aligned, and the wind to be blowing in the right direction, and neon flashing lights to appear in the sky. Ecclesiastes 9: 7 says that we should enjoy life with a joyful heart, for it is NOW that God favours what you do. If you're looking for the better day look no further, you are in it. God's promises are for today, His mercies are new every morning and we have access to the supernatural today. Decide to fill every moment with faith, hope and love because now is all you've got. Whatever you've been putting off for a better day, do something today that gets the ball rolling.

6. Who told you weren't good enough?
What is it about the human psyche that our biggest struggle is inferiority? Why don't we just declare ourselves awesome and move on. Isaiah 62: 3 talks about us being royal diadems in God's hand; Not sure what that is but it sounds pretty special. Isaiah 49: 16 also tells us that God has engraved us on the palm of his hand. Romans 5: 8 says that God demonstrated His love for us by dying for us. You're awesome and unique in everyway. God thinks you're great so why don't you take His word for it? He loved completely even before you'd made any mistakes or achieved anything great. So stop trying to impress Him with your successes or your failures He's simply not interested. God sees you complete and awesome. He made you and declares "it is good". Approach today with the thought that you are not just good enough but amazing.

7. Who told you God was fair?
Jesus told a story about a landowner who hired different groups of workers at different times of the day. The last set of workers only worked for one hour but the landowner paid them all the same wage. Fair? We think not. But that's what the kingdom of heaven is like. There is no pecking order in God. If you think you're entitled to anything in God's kingdom the reality is very different. God's got His own set of rules and they've got nothing to do with fair. Why? Because God is more interested in making you than what you do. He'll do whatever it takes for us to let go of our own agenda and just serve Him without any conditions. It may sound harsh but the benefits are well worth it. Today resolve to lay down your conditions of service and just do whatever God has put in front of you to do with a clean and happy heart. CR

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.