God is doing a new thing in you. I keep saying this to gals in the current Hunger Within class that I am co-leading. I believe it. I see it and I am awestruck at how God is working in the lives of these dear ladies. I see ladies taking the truth of God desiring to release them from the obsession of food and weight issues and I see them laying down all the burdens that He never meant for them to carry. I wanted to understand this saying at a deeper level, because I know the truth of this is grounded in His word and it is a testimony to how He works in our lives as we surrender daily to His leading and guidance.
We see in 2 Corinthians 5:17 that God’s word says if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: the old has gone, the new has come! At the moment when I accepted Christ Jesus as my Savior and as He grew to be the Lord of my life, I became a new person. I didn’t feel new, and since I was 9 at the time, I wasn’t quite mature in the word enough to understand what was happening to me, but I knew in my heart that I was changed. Jesus and the Holy Spirit became real to me. I felt the Holy Spirit’s hand on me even when I was rebelling in my youth. I knew that I knew that were I to die, I would have gone to heaven. He called me to be His, and from that point on, I had a reason to live and every dark time and trial I went through, He was right there with me, leading me and guiding me through them.
We also see in Ephesians 4:23-24 that God’s word says that we are made new in the attitude of our minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. So, what I understand is that we put on a new self, which means we have to take off the old self. What does that mean to me, personally? What do I need to take off so that God can do a new thing in me? I’m going to be painfully honest with you, dear reader. I am taking off:
- The Deanna who was not loved by her mother the way she needed.
- The Deanna who was abandoned by her dad (through death).
- The Deanna who is a compulsive dieter, food binger and restrictor, bulimic with laxatives to make the scale obey.
- The Deanna who was sexually abused as a young child.
- The Deanna who searched for love in the wrong places on the way to finding true intimacy.
- The Deanna who feels sorry for herself (even though she is greatly blessed).
- The Deanna who wonders how God can use her with her insecurity that she masks with pride.
Wow, that is a painful list, but it isn’t the end, so don’t feel sorry for that Deanna. You see, God did a new thing in this gal, and she is not the same. The attitude of my mind has been changed and this is who I am today, with my new self put on:
- The Deanna who is a forgiven child of God.
- The Deanna who is a set free child of God.
- The Deanna who has been adopted into God’s family.
- The Deanna whose mind is being renewed daily by God’s word.
- The Deanna who was not given a spirit of fear but a sound mind.
- The Deanna who let go of fear because Christ’s perfect love being worked in her life casts out all fear.
- The Deanna who is made holy by Christ Jesus, because He is holy.
- The Deanna who is a loved child of God.
- The Deanna who is held by and is held close to her loving Father.
- The Deanna who is confident in His strength.
- The Deanna who will not be shaken because she stands on the Rock.
- The Deanna who is fed by the Bread of Heaven and whose thirst is quenched by Living Water.
- The Deanna who is victorious.
- The Deanna who Jesus went to heaven to prepare a place for so that she will be with Him for eternity.
God is doing a new thing…in me. I am embracing my new identity. I am claiming what He has done so that I can let go of the old self that blocks me from Him. I am watching Him as He breaks down all those false “self-protective” walls I built up so that my life can reveal the glory of the work that the Creator of All is doing in my life. I am claiming all that He tells me I am through all He did for me so that I can discover a hope and power like no other.
Have you ever heard the story of Jacob and Esau? You can find it in God’s word in Genesis 25:27-34. Esau was willing to give up everything he had and everything he was promised for a bowl of lentil stew. I have been there. I understand. I have tried to fill that empty place with a bounty of food. I have been desperate for outward signs. I have wanted the empty praise of man for what I appeared to be doing in my own strength. When I look at these lists that I have shared with you dear reader, I have to ask myself what I have been willing to give up of my true self for the insignificance of a bowl of lentil stew?
The truth? Deanna is not that girl anymore. Deanna is a Jesus following girl. Her Lord Jesus is authoring and perfecting her faith. She is loved by and loves her heavenly Father and is held and comforted and taught by the Holy Spirit. She is letting go of self-determination for being Spirit-determined. She is embracing her true identity. God is doing a new thing in her.
Will you join me in claiming your true identity? Are you ready and willing to see what God is doing in your life? Will you put your name in each statement in my second list and embrace the new thing God is doing in your life.