“No one else ate cake!”
“What? Yes, they did. Everyone I saw had a piece.”
“Well, Catherine said with summer around the corner she couldn’t have any. And Elizabeth said the same thing.”
“Ok, so a few people, but whether they did or not shouldn’t affect you. Besides, it was delicious so I personally think they missed out!”
This snippet from a conversation with my daughter might be similar to one you’ve had too, even if only in your head and not with another person. Now I know the script may have been different, but have you not also had your view of the truth colored by some false reality you’ve “seen” as true?
“Nobody” having indulged in a piece of cake filled my daughter with shame as if she was somehow less than for not restraining from the dessert herself. But the lie that she didn’t measure up to a certain standard had already been brewing in her head as evident by her twisted take on what really occurred. How easy then for Satan to further color her view of truth when the lenses in which she saw herself, and the world around her, were not centered on who Christ says she is.
Maybe the false reality you see and believe reads something like this…
“I can’t go out with all those ladies. Have you seen them? They look amazing. No signs of aging, no slowing metabolism for them. Plus, they can go pick up whatever new designer item they want whenever they want to. And I’m still shopping at Target, living on a budget. They are in a different league. I can’t be friends with them.”
“Everyone around me has such exciting jobs and opportunities. They are all making big impacts in our community, but look at me. I’m just a mom, running carpools and endless errands.”
“I know it would make sense proximity-wise for our community group to meet at my home, but I can’t possible host. I’m not very creative with my tablescapes, or up to date with home interior trends. Heck, I don’t even cook like those others ladies, and on top of it all, my house is always cluttered. My husband says it doesn’t matter, but no way can I invite the group into my space after I’ve seen some of their homes and entertaining styles.
Any of these sceneries sound familiar? Or, maybe close enough to jog a memory?
In case you haven’t thought about it, no one talks to you more than you talk to you! But our self-talk is often clouded because our eyes are fixed on the wrong things.
The same is true of our kids.
The running commentary streaming through their heads, shaping reality and speaking lies about their identity, may go like one of these:
“Everyone was invited except me… Nobody cares about me. I’m worthless”
“I never get as many “likes” on my pictures as everyone else…I am a nobody.”
“How embarrassing to have not made the varsity team. Everyone is going to laugh at me and think I’m a loser.”
We determine truth based on what we see, so as long as we are wearing the wrong pair of lenses, we will never see clearly. What we need is gospel-glasses.
Jesus said, “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! (Matthew 6:22-23)“
We will be filled with light or darkness based on what we fix our eyes on. And whichever it is will affect our whole being. This is why comparing ourselves to others takes us down the dark path to feeling less than, worthless, insignificant, and not good enough. Or, why “seeing” someone’s dismissal or rejection of us as the basis of our worth consumes us with dark thoughts. Only by fixing our eyes on Jesus to see who he is for us, and who we are in him, does the narrative change.
- With eyes fixed on him, yes, my feelings may be hurt when someone treats me rudely but it doesn’t define or cripple me.
- With eyes fixed on him, I can be okay with not having the same luxuries, life, or body as someone else.
- With eyes fixed on him, his light illuminates hope, joy, and contentment even when circumstances are hard.
Is it time for a new pair of glasses?
In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. (John 1:4-5)”
May your eyes be lifted off yourself and onto Jesus to see full into his wonderful face. And in seeing who he is for you may you be filled with his light.
About the Author:
Kristen Hatton is the author of Face Time: Your Identity in a Selfie Worldfor teen girls and the teen devotional, Get Your Story Straight. In addition to her own blog and enCourage, she is a frequent contributor to The Rooted Ministry blog and has been featured on The Gospel Coalition. Kristen lives in Oklahoma with her pastor husband and they have three teenagers. Learn more by visiting her website at www.kristenhatton.com.