Inspiration

Let Go of Your Self-defeating Lies

"If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us." (1 John 1:8 NIV)

We lie to ourselves all the time: "I haven't gained any weight. I'm not hurting anyone. No one even noticed."

But one lie is more dangerous than most: "It's not really a problem." You tell yourself that your finances aren't a problem, your marriage isn't in trouble, and your temper isn't out of control.

Lying to ourselves is the number one way we mess up our lives. The Bible says,  "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us" (1 John 1:8 NIV). Sin causes us to deceive ourselves, and deception causes us to sin.

Behind every self-defeating act in our lives is a lie we've believed. Either we've lied to ourselves or we've believed one of Satan's lies. The Bible says our heart is "deceitful above all things" (Jeremiah 17:9). You and I have an amazing ability to lie to ourselves.

So stop it! Stop rationalizing. Stop minimizing your behavior. Stop excusing. Stop tolerating.

To stop defeating yourself - doing all of those self-defeating behaviors that cripple your ability to follow Jesus faithfully - you have to stop deceiving yourself. Jesus said, "When you know the truth, the truth will set your free." But first, the truth will make you miserable! You can't be free from what you can't admit exists.

You can't beat the problem if you're lying to yourself about it.

Talk It Over

- What self-destructive behavior in your life are you pretending isn't there? What activity do you know is unhealthy?

- What are the lies you believe that keep you from making lasting changes in your life?

 

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Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller "The Purpose Driven Life." His book, "The Purpose Driven Church," was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also the founder of Pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.

This devotional © 2013 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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