The Lie That’s Holding You Back…and How to Overcome It
You’ve heard the voice. You know the one. Most of the time it is quiet. Subtle. In the background. But it’s always there. You want it to go away, but it just keeps echoing the same destructive refrain…
- “You will never be a good parent.”
- “Your marriage will never be intimate and joyful.”
- “You’ll never get beyond living month-to-month.”
- “You’re not smart enough.”
- “You’re not pretty enough.”
- “You’ll never overcome that habit.”
- “You aren’t _______________.”
Let me be clear. It’s a lie. And you’re believing it. It’s no wonder that Satan is called “the accuser” in Revelation 12:10. If we are ever going to move from judgment (of ourselves and others) to improvement we have got to ask this question:
What lie am I believing?
That’s Step One. Calling it out is the beginning. And it’s vital. We need to name it and call it what it is. A lie.
Our enemy has been lying since Genesis 1 and he hasn’t slowed down.
- He told Eve that God was holding out on her.
- He told Sarah and Abraham they were too old.
- He told Moses he wasn’t a good leader.
- He told the Israelites that slavery is better than freedom.
- He told Jonah that running away from God was better than running toward Him.
- He told the woman at the well that she wasn’t worthy of relationships.
- He told Peter that denial is better than loyalty.
- He told Paul that religion was better than relationship.
And it was all lies.
Step Two is to tell someone. Actually, tell TWO people.
The first is Jesus Himself. Talk to Him about it. Tell Him that you recognize that you’ve been listening to the lie. Admit your own inability to overcome the lie on your own. Believe that Jesus meant it when He said, Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (Mt. 11:28, NIV)
Then tell someone else. Someone you can trust. A friend. A spouse. A pastor. Someone. It’s likely that you’ve heard this before. Still…read these words from Ecclesiastes 4 again:
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor:
If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.
Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Once the lie is identified, Jesus is told, and you have entrusted your struggle to another person, there is a final step.
The lie must be replaced with a louder truth.
Too often we miss that. We might read the truth in the Bible, hear it from a friend, or read it in a book or blog post. That doesn’t mean it will be louder than the lie. And whichever one is louder will win.
- Read it again and again.
- Post it somewhere you will see it. A lot.
- Find a song that speaks to this truth and play it. Over and over.
- Ask the friend from Step Two to call or email you, reminding you of the truth you are striving to believe.
The list at the bottom of this post was first shared in the middle of a sermon I preached a few years ago. I left the stage and had each one fade in and out, one statement per slide, every seven seconds. So many people told me they found it helpful – and kept referring to it again and again – that I ended up printing it in my second book.
It might be a good start for you. Read it. Share it. Add to it. It’s all true.
Question: Back to Step One: What lie are you believing?
These are all true about you…
- You are a child of God. (I John 3:1)
- You may participate in the divine nature. (I Peter 1:4)
- You have a mighty God who is for you…not against you. (Romans 8:31)
- You have been crucified with Christ and you no longer live, but Christ lives in you. (Galatians 2:20)
- You have access to the throne of God – where you can receive mercy and find grace. (Hebrews 4:16)
- You have been raised with Christ and seated with Him in the heavenly realm. (Ephesians 1:6)
- You are part of God’s family. (Hebrews 2:11)
- You have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ. (Ephesians 1:3)
- You have everything you need for life and godliness. (I Peter 1:3)
- You have been bought with a price. (I Corinthians 6:20)
- You were called to be free. (Galatians 5:13)
- You have been ransomed by the Son of God. (Matthew 20:28)
- You are not condemned. (Romans 8:1)
- You have been forgiven. (Acts 10:43)
- You have become the righteousness of God. (II Corinthians 5:21)
- You are God’s workmanship…His poem…His masterpiece. (Ephesians 2:10)
- You have been set free from the law of sin. (Romans 8:2)
- You have been made alive with Christ. (Ephesians 2:5)
- You have been given the authority of Christ. (Luke 10:19)
- You have been fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14)
- You are dead to sin and alive to God. (Romans 6:11)
- You were chosen by God before the creation of the world. (Ephesians 1:4)
- You are destined for glorious freedom. (Romans 8:21)
- You are a citizen of Heaven. (Philippians 3:20)
- You are more than a conqueror through Him who loved you. (Romans 8:37)
- You have been baptized with Christ and are now clothed with Christ. (Galatians 3:27)
- You have been brought from death to life. (Romans 6:13)
- You have been given the Holy Spirit to guide you into all truth. (John 16:13)
- You have been redeemed and have the full rights of sons. (Galatians 4:5)
- You are protected by the powerful name of Jesus. (John 17:11)
- You have the power of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 1:8)
- You have a High Priest who is able to sympathize with your weaknesses. (Hebrews 4:13)
- You have the Holy Spirit interceding for you right now. (Romans 8:26)
- Your Lord is near. (Philippians 4:5)
- You are known. (Psalm 139:1)
- You cannot be separated from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:38-39)
- You are a work in progress – and you will be completed. (Philippians 1:6)
- You were loved by Jesus before you loved Him. (I John 4:19)
- You are not alone. (Deuteronomy 31:6)
- You have the full armor of God…
- …the belt of truth
- …the breastplate of righteousness
- …the shoes of the gospel of peace
- …the shield of faith
- …the helmet of salvation
- …the sword of the Spirit – the Word of God. (Ephesians 6:13-17)
- You have God’s angels sent to serve you. (Hebrews 1:14)
- Your needs will be met according to God’s glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)
- You have a High Priest who always lives to intercede for you. (Hebrews 7:25)
- You have a God who has gone before you. (Psalm 59:10)
- You have a God who hears you. (I John 5:14)
- You cannot be snatched from God’s hand. (John 10:28-29)
- God is for you. (Psalm 56:9)
- You are Jesus’ joy. (Hebrews 12:2)
- You are loved. (John 3:16)