Deception is a dangerous problem, and something Jesus warned us about in the Bible.
In Matthew 24:4 (AMP), He said, "Be careful that on one misleads you [deceiving you and leading you into error]." There are other places in Scripture where we're warned to watch out and be alert because we have an enemy who is trying to deceive us.
When you're deceived, you believe a lie. This is dangerous because when you believe a lie, even though it's not true, it becomes your reality.
I used to believe I would always have a second-rate life because my father had sexually abused me throughout my childhood and I was "damaged goods." This lie made me insecure, bitter, hard to get along with, and absolutely miserable.
But when I discovered the truth in God's Word, that He would heal my soul and pay me back for the shame of my youth, I had hope that I could move forward in His plans and purposes for my life. I began growing in my relationship with Jesus, learning how to trust Him to restore my mind and emotions—my heart—and how to live according to the wisdom in His Word.
Breaking Free from the Lies That Tormented My Soul
A major key to overcoming the wrong mindsets I'd lived with for many years, I had to obey His command to walk in love and forgive everyone who had hurt me. Luke 6:27b-28 (NIV) says, "Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you." And Romans 12:21 urges us to "not be overcome with evil, but overcome evil with good."
I realize that choosing forgiveness is one of the most difficult things God asks us to do, especially if we believe that whoever hurt us is in the wrong and doesn't deserve to be forgiven. But staying mad won't help you either; the truth is it actually causes you more hurt and misery if you refuse to get past the offense.
I remember the day I was praying for God to show me someone I could help and He spoke to my heart about my parents. At the time, they were older and needed help with the activities of their daily life. I felt that God wanted me to move them close to where my husband, Dave, and I lived and take care of them until they died.
At first, I resisted this idea because there was nothing in me that wanted to see them, much less spend money on them and meet their needs. But I told Dave what I was thinking, and he said if God was telling me to do this, we should do it. It wasn't what I wanted to hear, but he was right, so we moved them into a house near us and took care of them until they died.
This was one of the hardest things I've ever done, but I can honestly say now that it is one of the greatest decisions I've ever made. God honored my obedience and gave me the grace to do the right thing, and before he passed away, my dad asked me to forgive him and he accepted Christ as his Savior.
The reward of forgiveness has far outweighed the pain I lived with for so many years. It has literally changed my life. And I firmly believe it was one of the hardest punches I could ever throw at the enemy!
Choose the Truth
Whatever your challenge may be today—the pain of an injustice, fear of the unknown, sickness, a broken relationship or any other hardship—I want to encourage you to trust God and focus on the truth of His Word. Remember that He loves you unconditionally, and He is always with you. He is on your side as you go through the difficulties you face, and He has your best interest at heart at all times. God is close to you when you're hurting the most, and He will fight your battles as you trust and obey Him.
Spend some time studying Scriptures that will help you overcome any lies that have kept you from the peace and joy God wants you to have through your life in Christ. Scriptures like Psalm 34:18 and 147:3, Romans 8:1-2 and 37-39, Romans 12:1-2 and 21, and John 10:10 are good places to start.
Also, our team at Joyce Meyer Ministries is here for you, to pray for you and encourage you during the difficult, painful seasons of your life. You can contact us online at www.joycemeyer.org. Remember that we love you, and most importantly, God loves you. That's the most amazing truth of all!
Joyce Meyer is a New York Times' bestselling author and founder of Joyce Meyer Ministries, Inc. She has authored more than 100 books, including Battlefield of the Mind and Your Battles Belong to the Lord (FaithWords). She hosts the Enjoying Everyday Life radio and TV programs, which air on hundreds of stations worldwide. For more information, visit www.joycemeyer.org.
For more on this topic, order Joyce's six-teaching CD series Battle Strategies for a Victorious Life. You can also contact us to receive our free magazine, Enjoying Everyday Life, by calling (800) 727-9673 or visiting www.joycemeyer.org.
Joyce Meyer is a New York Times best-selling author and founder of Joyce Meyer Ministries, Inc. She has authored 100 books, including Battlefield of the Mind and Get Your Hopes Up! (Hachette). She hosts the Enjoying Everyday Life radio and TV programs, which air on hundreds of stations worldwide. For more information, visit www.joycemeyer.org.
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