I spend a good amount of time trying to open my heart to the incredible peace, joy, and life that God wants to give me. One of the biggest obstacles to opening my heart comes from the lies of sin. The sin in my life tells me lies that harden my heart and create a kind of block between me and God’s joy and peace.
The best example of this comes from how sin tells me that I’m alone in my life and that I need to rely on myself.
Sin loves to tell me that God doesn’t care about me or pay attention to me because I’m a disappointment. After that, sin tells me that God holds things back from me because I’m a disappointment. This lie always creates a sense of bitterness and loneliness.
It hurts to feel like God is holding out on you or doesn’t care about what’s happening in my life; that drastically changes how I view myself.
I still catch myself thinking that God sees me as a disappointment and that causes Him to hold back on providing a wife or girlfriend. While I understood why God would be disappointed in me, I still get really frustrated by the idea that He would hold back something that I wanted. That frustration makes me doubt God’s love for me, His role in my life, and my identity.
The deceitfulness of sin in my life follows a very similar pattern to how Satan deceived Eve into eating the apple.
Satan’s first two lies that he told Eve boiled down to two ideas. The consequences won’t be that bad, ‘surely you won’t die’, and that God was holding out on her, ‘God knows that when you eat it…you will be like God’. I went through the same path of twisted logic every time that I looked at porn.
First, I rationalized that the consequences wouldn’t be so bad because Jesus made sure all my sins were covered. Next, I came the very false conclusion that I only wanted to look at porn because God hadn’t provided a girlfriend or wife. The idea that our sins won’t hurt that bad mixed in with the conclusion that God holds out on us makes for a powerful motivation.
When I believe in this combo of lies, I miss out on the truth that God is for me and desperately wants to give me the real life that my heart desires. This combination of lies makes me feel like the child of a disinterested workaholic and not the beloved child of God. A powerful change happens when you make that shift in identity and that change hardens our hearts.
Adam and Eve went from enjoying a healthy relationship with God in the Garden of Eden to betraying Him in part because Satan convinced them that God lied to them and wanted to hold something back from them. Those lies hardened their hearts and put them on the path to directly going against God’s commands. That change in direction didn’t happen because Adam and Eve were dumb or fickle, it happened because Satan’s lies hardened their hearts against the love of God.
All the love God had shown them previously didn’t mean much to them because they believed the lie and consequently felt hurt and betrayed. I know that perspective because God’s impossible love for me seems so inconsequential when it feels like He’s holding something back that I want. That misconception hardens my heart and makes me just focus on what I don’t have.
When I know the truth that God loves me and wants to give me life, I know for certain that I am His adopted son. On the other hand, when sin tells me that I’m dirty in God’s eyes or that He doesn’t want to give me life, I find myself believing that I am the follower of a God with better things to do than worry about me. That shift in identity makes me feel that I’m on my own and causes a great deal of loneliness in my life.
The consequences of that shift leads to even more sin and eventually I find myself in a vicious cycle of loneliness and sin. God wants us to know that He loves us and walks with us in every part of our lives. Satan wants to use the lies of sin to convince us otherwise because his main goal is to turn our hearts away from God.
We must recognize these lies for what they are and guard ourselves against them or they will convince us that God doesn’t really care about us. When that happens, our hearts will become hardened and we will find ourselves in a heap of trouble. We must remind ourselves and each other in every way possible that sin seeks to deceive us and that God loves us more than we can imagine.
But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today”, so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. – Hebrews 3:13
Many times, the best solution to this problem comes from each other. We need to encourage each other and reflect God’s love to each other in order to fight back against the deceitfulness of sin. We can’t fight sin and the lies that come with it on our own, we need to open up our hearts and tell our Christian community about our sins and the lies that they tell us.
One of the best parts of my life was realizing that people wouldn’t reject me when I told them about my porn addiction. I would’ve never found that out if I hadn’t confessed my sin and that I feared the rejection of other people. That vulnerability opened a way for God’s love to shine through His children and soften my heart.
I would not trade the world for that experience.
The lies of sin attack me everyday and try to block out all of the love that God wants to pour into my life. I need to acknowledge this attack on my heart and actively fight back against it. If I don’t, I will survive off the crumbs of God’s love that drop into my life instead of enjoying the daily feast that He prepares for me.
Do you have a close community of believers in your life who you feel comfortable confessing to and talking about all the lies that Satan throws at us? If you’re not plugged into a small group, but want one I suggest looking for a local church or a Christian student organization if you’re in college. Some of these links may help you out.
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