Pastor Mark Smith of Impact Water Ministry spoke about who God says we are. He pointed out most believers go through life believing the lies of satan and the world. Lies such as “I am bad,” “I’ll never measure up,” and other shame and guilt ridden messages that put us in a prison of our own making.
There are many truths of life that, when questioned in today’s culture, can be very volcanic. Mark suggests that for believers there are only two upon which to focus: 1) know God and 2) know yourself. Socrates said, “the unexamined life is not worth living” and Shakespeare said, “know thyself.” Modern theologian and pastor Tim Keller believes identity is a key issue in the world today.
INVITATION: Join our Bible study this week to explore who God says you are because of what Christ has done on your behalf. Could you be living in a prison cell of your own making, holding the very key that will set you free?
MONDAY: Song of Solomon 4:9: YOU have captured the heart of God. Can you take God at His very word today and feel the love and care God has for you? Spend time allowing God to love you. You do not have to change or do anything. He loves you – just as you are. Trust Him.
TUESDAY: Psalm 34:5: Shame. Is it something you struggle with in life? In your prayer time today, imagine facing Jesus Christ and willingly unveiling your face – whatever mask or covering you might be wearing that keeps you living in false identity rather than in your true identity given to you by God in Jesus Christ. Spend some time basking in the glory of God, in whatever form that might take for you. Some people do best imagining images, such as a dove, or a cross, or light.
WEDNESDAY: 2 Cor. 3:12-18: As you pray and meditate with these verses, are there some “old veils” over you face that may need to be removed? What comes to mind as you read about a “veil over their hearts” in verse 15? Are you open to the Word of God and the Spirit of God in your life or is there a veil covering your heart? Might there be past hurts and pain that need forgiveness and healing? Mark shared how the men on water projects share their stories – including the abuse, divorce, betrayal and other evil and dark occurrences. Have you ever shared your story with anyone? Perhaps a counselor, Spiritual Director or a pastor or close friend? It is part of what will help you begin to uncover your face and move from one degree of glory to the next. The first step, however, is removing the veil.
THURSDAY: Galatians 5:24: Mark mentioned most people live life trying to “manage sin.” Does that describe you? Today, I want to encourage you to reflect on how you can begin to turn more and more of your life over to Christ living in and through you.
FRIDAY: Philippians 2:15: Have you ever thought about being created in order to shine like the stars? We are to be like a “city on a hill” according to Matthew 5:14. Is your light being dimmed by a veil of your own making? Are you feeling stuck in a lifestyle of trying to manage sin, behave and believe correctly, and maybe attend church? There is SO MUCH more to the Christian life than those things. Are you ready to dive deeper?
SATURDAY: Who are you? Are you looking at Jesus? Mark mentioned all it takes is believing and trusting. How can you “uncover your face” and trust and believe in God more this week? Perhaps you can journal about how you see you life begin to change from “glory to glory” because of walking in the footsteps of Jesus rather than relying on yourself.