Friday, January 28, 2011

40DLD-12: Believing the Enemy

I had to repent today for not appreciating everything the Lord has offered me.  Well, it's easy to say I haven't appreciated everything properly, but there has been one thing I haven't really appreciated fully that I do believe He wants to do in my life.  See, I've known for a long time that I've got a wife coming that He has hand-selected, not because I deserve her, not because I default to her, but because I've been willing to let Him select one for me.  Now comes the sticky part.  I'm a virgin, but I've never been completely sure God was going to give me a wife who's a virgin, too. 

One part of it is that I don't believe I deserve it.  I had a long-standing struggle with porn, lust, and masturbation.  I was 13 or so when I discovered the internet is for porn, and that held on to me for most of my life to date.  There have been ups and downs, as I about two and a half years without falling into sin, another five before I got back into the internet porn, and the lion's share of guilty feelings all around.  There have also been times when I was so close to the Lord there was no shaking me, where I was actually fighting to keep my purity.  Those were awesome times.  Issues like that make me feel like I'm unworthy.

Another part is that I forget about being redeemed.  There are the ideal women who are held up to me: successful, beautiful, chaste, and on the offensive to stay that way.  One woman refuses to date, another has never kissed a guy, whatever the case may be, the mirror still shows me a guy who, while remaining a virgin, feels like it's only by technicality, as though at a certain point I lost the status vicariously through looking at too much porn.  The mirror says I was engaged once, and I'm responsible for the mess I made, so I'll eventually get stuck with her again whether I like it or not.  I forget that, though the Lord has let me go further than I should have, He has ultimately kept me from having sex, even though the offer was on the table a couple of times.

The third part is that I don't see it happening, so I start to lose hope.  I have my own desires for a wife, but I'm a little bit afraid that my standards are too high.  If I say that God wants not just good things for me but great things, I'm likely to get humbled, and God will give me something I hate.  The enemy says there's one who'll marry you, jump on that opportunity before it passes you by.  The enemy reminds me that I don't want to end up old and alone.  The enemy reminds me that my parents are past the age their parents were when I was born, and not getting any younger (of course that's a lie, my parents are in great shape for mid-60's!).

But the voice of Truth tells me a different story,
The voice of Truth says, "Do not be afraid."
And the voice of Truth says, "This is for My glory."
Out of all the voices calling out to me,
I will choose to listen and believe the voice of Truth.

-- "The Voice of Truth" by Casting Crowns.

The Lord showed me tonight what all is wrong with these types of thinking:

  • It's not about whether or not I "deserve" a wife.  I have never deserved anything, so it's only by His blessing and grace that I have anything at all.
  • I am not righteous on my own, but He is my righteousness!  II Corinthians 5:21 – “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him”
  • He deserves the first and the best; if I give Him my first and my best, why would He give me something used and substandard?   Is He not good?  Does He not give good gifts?
  • Since He is righteous and that righteousness is on me, and since He deserves the best of everything, therefore it is not I who deserve a good wife, but He in me who deserves to have a good wife!
  • Lastly, even though I can't see it, that's why we have faith, for, "we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?" -- Romans 8:24.  Faith, as i have learned while preparing a message on the whole armor of God, is a shield.  A shield is something you can use to protect yourself OR someone else.  There are plenty of examples of people whom Jesus healed because of their faith, but in Mark 2 there stands out a story of a sick man carried to Jesus by his friends, and in verse 5, "When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee." 
So maybe God can give me the best.  Maybe I can have a wife who doesn't bring sexual baggage to the marriage bed.  Maybe I can be redeemed from the sin I have committed.  Maybe He loves me after all.

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