Purity & Freedom

Nothing to Prove

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:13-14 {KJV}

As we look ahead on this journey of freedom, yesterday was all about the vision.  Who do you see yourself being?  What are some passions and desires you have?

Today is going to be all about our motivation.

If you are move forward to prove something to yourself, you will fail.  For that matter, if you move forward to prove anything to anyone, you will fail.

I know.  I have been down that road.  At one point, I was going online, printing off pictures and burning them just to try and show that I was the one in control here.

Some of you are at that place, and it is one rough, dark place.  It is filled with passwords, filters, sticky notes, reminders, anger, guilt, shame, and promises to never do it again.  You feel like you are letting yourself down, letting God down, letting your (future) husband down, your family, your church, the girls you mentor… the list goes on.

Your list from yesterday might have had huge dreams on it.  Maybe you want to be a worship leader, or an author, or run a ministry for this, or be a counselor for that.  For some of you, your whole future revolves around beating this part of your life to death.  You want to get married because you want to prove that this sin has not made you unmarriable (no, that is not a word).   You want to be a youth leader because you want proof that God can still use you.

There you stand, trying to single-handedly defend something- the people around you, yourself, your reputation.

 You know what it reminds me of?  Shadowboxing.  (And now, “Shadowboxer” is stuck in my head.)

You are standing there fighting an opponent you cannot see.  Why?  Because you are fighting yourself!  You are shadowboxing a mirror!  That is the thing with lust; it starts in you, and you cannot fix you!  No willpower in the world fixes you.  You might be able to retrain you, but you cannot fix you.  So to walk in freedom, you are going to have to tap into a motivation that exists outside of you.

Your journey in freedom is not to become good enough on your own so that He approves.  Your journey of freedom is not to salvage your reputation.  Your journey of freedom is a pursuit of Him.  Your journey is all about Him- the One who has freed you.  The One who can fix you.

It is not about proving yourself to Him, but allowing Him to prove His grace through you.

So often we look at Him and say, “OK, God.  I got this!  Thanks for the help up!” and then we start swinging again, like God is the waterboy in our corner or that guy with the towel.  When we get knocked down, we come crawling back to Him and wait for His pep talk, then up we go again, fighting for our honor.  If we stopped long enough to listen to Him, though, we would realize that He is telling us to leave the ring and follow Him.  On our own, we cannot prove anything;

therefore, on our own, we have nothing to prove.


Today

  • Look over the ‘goals’ from yesterday.  What are your motivations for each?  Are any of them rooted in the desire to impress or save your reputation? Write your motivation for each, and a verse (if applicable).
  • Think of the people in your life.  Who are you trying to protect or prove yourself to?  Are there any relationships you need to temporary suspend while going through this time of healing?  Are there people you need to tell?  (more on that later)
  • If there is anything in your life that is an act, just done to save face, step away from it for a bit.  It will not be easy, but it will be so helpful.
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