Tue. Nov 12th, 2019

Addressing the Lies Men Believe

Who Am I…Really?

7 min read

John 8:44 (NIV)
He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”

One thing I know for sure is that the enemy doesn’t want you to know who you really are. I’m not talking about your given name, your job title, or the aura you give off to others because of your gifts, talents, or abilities. I’m talking about the real you, the you that the enemy knows if you ever discover and live out of…he’s toast. The enemy wants you to believe that who you are is the sum of your sin (shame), or even worse, your good deeds (pride). He wants you to live behind the mask of performance based theology. When a man does that, his authentic self will never truly be known by others, never reach his God given potential, and never discover the unconditional love and grace God has for him. He will eventually find himself stuck neck deep in the mud of performance based living, repeatedly attempting to do good in order to be good. When his attempts to be good enough through works-based living fails, shame will hold him in place keeping him from living that life to the full Jesus died for because he now believes he’s not good enough. 

One thing I know for sure is that the enemy doesn’t want you to know who you really are. I’m not talking about your given name, your job title, or the aura you give off to others because of your gifts, talents, or abilities. I’m talking about the real you, the you that the enemy knows if you ever discover and live out of…he’s toast. The enemy wants you to believe that who you are is the sum of your sin (shame), or even worse, your good deeds (pride). He wants you to live behind the mask of performance based theology. When a man does that, his authentic self will never truly be known by others, never reach his God given potential, and never discover the unconditional love and grace God has for him. He will eventually find himself stuck neck deep in the mud of performance based living, repeatedly attempting to do good in order to be good. When his attempts to be good enough through works-based living fails, shame will hold him in place keeping him from living that life to the full Jesus died for because he now believes he’s not good enough.

The enemy loves the false self, the poser you create in order to convince yourself you’re good enough. He wants you to believe that you are the names others give you, or the false narratives you’ve created to try and win the good opinions of others. He knows that if you identify or compare yourself with others, you will either hide in shame, or set yourself up to be an idol through creating the false self. That man will either believe he is a loser and run from the battle, or die a painful death having never knowing how put on the armor of God.

While attending a men’s retreat several years ago, we were all instructed to get away with God to ask him who each of us really is to the Father; to have him give us a new name just as Abram became Abraham, Saul became Paul, Sarai became Sarah, Jacob to Israel, and so on. One man came back saying he was God’s “William Wallace,” another was God’s “Maximus” (characters from the movies, Braveheart and Gladiator), but others came back saying they hadn’t heard anything from God about their new name.

I understand the point of getting away with God and asking the Father who we really are to him, and although a name or a title like, Navy SEAL may command respect (and understandably so here on earth), who we REALLY are, was never created from a cracked mold and can NEVER be defined by an earthly title. We are shaped by our cracks, our flaws, our sin, but the hands and the mold that holds us and formed us are sinless, tempered and forged in the Heavens, created the universe, conquered death and sin, crushed the head of the enemy, and each mold was created uniquely for us with our name boldly and lovingly inscribed on it. It doesn’t matter what other guys call you are or what medals or trophies you’ve earned; they don’t impress God or cause him to love and respect you more or love you less. His love is unconditional for those he calls his children and when he calls our name, he’s calling his own to himself.

When we give any other name but “Jesus” power, we’ve given those lesser names the power to define us and shape our thoughts, emotions, and actions. That may work for you on a good day when everyone wants to be you, but on days when we screw up, fall down, betray, abandon and murder with our words and actions, that name can take on a whole new meaning.  And it happens to all of us.  If you find a man out there that tells you that he’s never made a mess of something, then that guy is probably living in a mess bigger than anything you’ve seen. 

The real you, the you that God wants you to discover and live out of came to be the moment you truly believed Christ died for your sins and you gave your life to him. In that moment, God’s promised Holy Spirit came into your spirit giving you a new, sinless identity…Christ in you. (Ephesians 1:13-14) At your core you have not only been forgiven, but your faith in Christ has made you 100% righteous. (Romans 3:22) We all screw up, but lucky for us as believers, at our core we bear the name of Jesus, and that name can never lose its power, respect, and authority. You are more than a conqueror!

The enemy loves the false self, the poser you create in order to convince yourself you’re good enough. He wants you to believe that you are the names others give you, or the false narratives you’ve created to try and win the good opinions of others. He knows that if you identify or compare yourself with others, you will either hide in shame, or set yourself up to be an idol through creating the false self. That man will either believe he is a loser and run from the battle, or die a painful death having never knowing how put on the armor of God.

While attending a men’s retreat several years ago, we were all instructed to get away with God to ask him who each of us really is to the Father; to have him give us a new name just as Abram became Abraham, Saul became Paul, Sarai became Sarah, Jacob to Israel, and so on. One man came back saying he was God’s “William Wallace,” another was God’s “Maximus” (characters from the movies, Braveheart and Gladiator), but others came back saying they hadn’t heard anything from God about their new name.

I understand the point of getting away with God and asking the Father who we really are to him, and although a name or a title like, Navy SEAL may command respect (and understandably so here on earth), who we REALLY are, was never created from a cracked mold and can NEVER be defined by an earthly title. We are shaped by our cracks, our flaws, our sin, but the hands and the mold that holds us and formed us are sinless, tempered and forged in the Heavens, created the universe, conquered death and sin, crushed the head of the enemy, and each mold was created uniquely for us with our name boldly and lovingly inscribed on it. It doesn’t matter what other guys call you are or what medals or trophies you’ve earned; they don’t impress God or cause him to love and respect you more or love you less. His love is unconditional for those he calls his children and when he calls our name, he’s calling his own to himself.

When we give any other name but “Jesus” power, we’ve given those lesser names the power to define us and shape our thoughts, emotions, and actions. That may work for you on a good day when everyone wants to be you, but on days when we screw up, fall down, betray, abandon and murder with our words and actions, that name can take on a whole new meaning.  And it happens to all of us.  If you find a man out there that tells you that he’s never made a mess of something, then that guy is probably living in a mess bigger than anything you’ve seen.  

The real you, the you that God wants you to discover and live out of came to be the moment you truly believed Christ died for your sins and you gave your life to him. In that moment, God’s promised Holy Spirit came into your spirit giving you a new, sinless identity…Christ in you. (Ephesians 1:13-14) At your core you have not only been forgiven, but your faith in Christ has made you 100% righteous. (Romans 3:22) We all screw up, but lucky for us as believers, at our core we bear the name of Jesus, and that name can never lose its power, respect, and authority. You are more than a conqueror!