Lies That Rob Me of Joy: Lie #1

Welcome to Day One of the four part series, "Lies that Rob Me of Joy" 

Satan does everything he can to get my eyes off Jesus; then I become joyless and vulnerable to believing even more lies. As I dig to discover the source of my joylessness, I find lies. I fully intend to shed light on these little roaches and watch them scatter. Care to join me? 

4 Lies That Rob Me Of Joy:

  1. I can earn God’s favor
  2. It’s greedy and selfish to enjoy this life
  3. It’s not fair that I would  have so much and others wouldn’t
  4. Joy is happiness

First, let me illustrate what I mean by being joyless:

Their young fingers firmly quiver on cello strings, their hands quickly maneuver bows. They must be about 7 – 14 years old. This young quartet creates a symphony in perfect time. I’m moved by the beauty of these children and their gift. Perhaps this is what heaven is like.  How God must delight in them right now! Tears collect in my eyes as I soak in their angelic song.

Joy dissipates, as I suddenly feel completely undeserving of this pleasure. ‘With all the death and starvation around us, how dare I sit here and enjoy this moment. What a lazy, selfish glutton I am.’  Tears stream down my face as joy succumbs to sorrow.

This is just one of many moments that could have been joyful but were not. Lies we believe rob us of joy. Thank God for the truth that sets us free!

LIE #1: I Can Earn God’s Favor

I want to believe that I deserve blessing, honor, joy. I want to earn it – or, at least I think I do. Larry Crabb, author of “The Pressure’s Off” puts it this way:

“I want this life to work, and I’m willing to do whatever it takes to make it happen. No wonder I feel so much pressure and struggle with so much disillusionment and doubt.  When things work well, I publicly say “Praise God”, and privately whisper, “Of course. I did what I was told. I got it right.” When things go poorly, I publicly declare, “God is working for my good. I will trust Him.” privately I wonder, “What did I do wrong””

TRUTH:  I don’t deserve pleasure, joy or blessings. No one does. God may choose to give them to me and not others, or give to them and not me. It is not based on merit, but His choosing.

Shining the Light:

"Are we saying, then, that God was unfair? Of course not! 
For God said to Moses, "I will show mercy to anyone I choose, 
and I will show compassion to anyone I choose." 
So it is God who decides to show mercy. 
We can neither choose it nor work for it."
Romans 9:14-16


“You must recognize that the Lord your God 
is not giving you this good land because you are good, 
for you are not – you are a stubborn people.”
Deuteronomy 9:6

 “So it is clear that no one can be made right with God 
by trying to keep the law. For the Scriptures say, 
“It is through faith that a righteous person has life”
Galatians 3:11

It seems impossible to wrap my mind around this. 
We live in a world where 1 + 2 = 3. Do this, and that will happen. It seems insane to consider that NO effort I make will deem me worthy to receive blessings, mercy, grace.

Lord, I think I know what’s fair but I don’t. I don’t see the big picture you do. I don’t know your higher ways – how you measure or  judge … I can’t understand it. Maybe I never will. Lord, help me to rest in your presence – to be fulfilled by you whether I receive blessings or not. I want to please you, Jesus. Help me cross over from serving out of pride to serving out of love. 

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5 comments:

MTJ said...

Hi Kim,

Thank you for sharing thoughts which express obstacles faced in our walk with Christ. All of of encounter the lies that seek to frustrate and undermine our faith. I have faced the lie of being unworthy and though I now know that I don't have to earn God's favor, that lie seeks to return and be a part of my thoughts.

You're right, God is sovereign, He will have mercy on whom he chooses. However and whenever God chooses to bless my life, I will remain appreciative; but I won't think He has to or that I've done something to obligate Him to bless me when I've been given the greatest gift I could possibly have.

Good post Kim.

Blessings and peace.

MTJ

Faith Imagined said...

Thank you Jesus for giving us Your Blessing and Mercy regardless of our merit!

This is a great study! I am interested in your insights on #3. I struggle with that particular joy-robbing lie!

Deborah Ann said...

You have laid the groundwork for some very important truths that so often get misinterpreted and twisted in the church. God loves it when we laugh. He loves it when we admire His great handiwork in the heavens and on the earth. The 'holier-than-thou' attitude just has to go. We're not doing God any favors by acting like puppets. Great post!

Peggy said...

Blessings Kim... I came here via MTJ's blog & your comment & his.
I spent time looking for the series
under your tag and I tried everything, I thought, except the obvious: devotional. Now I bookmarked your blog and looking forward to reading all 4, but I'm worn out for now.

This certainly does set us up for these 4 lies... are there more? or does everything fit into 1 of these 4?

Now the first one I don't think robbed me of my JOY...after working, teaching, volunteering,
and doing it all all my life up until lately, I couldn't have been trying to earn God's favor? (lol)

Lesson learned (check).

Thank you for the scriptures & your beautiful prayer! Everything's so well written. I really need to read this all. Thanks for sharing.
Peggy

From The Heart Online said...

@ MTJ - Thanks :)
@ Alisa - I look forward to hearing your thoughts on Lie #3 ;)
@ Deborah Ann - 'God loves it when we laugh' - I have a hard time understanding that. Laughter and tears were not very welcome in my home growing up - well, only in 'acceptable' doses and times...It's hard to imagine God 'delighting' in me as scripture says, and 'sing' over me. I pray He unveils that for me so that I can enter His presence with JOY! :)

@ Peggy - Welcome here! Thanks for stopping by :) I think I'll add this series to a 'Popular Posts' link so it's easier to find. I'm sure you're not the only one who had a tough time finding it... :)