What knocks you off your game?
What words push your buttons?
What causes you to doubt yourself?
And what about accusations? Have you ever been unjustly accused?
In fact, something happened very recently that rocked me. It was only after I returned home and shared my story with my husband, that John took hold of me and said in no uncertain terms, “Heather, that is just not true.”
Some one, who I had just met, gave me their opinion. This person decided to give me some advice. I was not expecting this kind of interaction. I expected an altogether different conversation. Instead, the words I received caused me to doubt myself. The unsolicited advice didn’t sit well with me and I found it difficult to believe it. However, the words shook me nonetheless.
After the meeting, as I debriefed the interaction with my husband, John disagreed with the insights. He took me in his arms and steadied me. My husband held me fast and spoke words of encouragement that washed away the accusations, the doubts, and the fears.
Why did I allow a person I don’t even know to inflict me with so many doubts?
Without going into the whole story, the person touched on an area of vulnerability. When this particular button is pushed, if I am not in a good and stable place, every single worry, fear, and accusation I’ve either heard, experienced or even told myself, floods my mind. A short, five minute discourse that this person probably didn’t even think about again, literally tipped me over.
John thought I was a ding-dong to allow it to happen.
However, if truth be told, we all have buttons of vulnerability. And it seems that these buttons are pressed at the most inconvenient and unnecessary of times; especially if we are not doing as well as we would like. Like me; the other day. Doubts, fears, and accusations arise and inflict harm even when we know that they really shouldn’t.
For the past few days, I have been reading and meditating upon these words:
But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation—if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. New International Version Colossians 1: 22-23a
Because of Christ’s physical body that endured death on my behalf, I am holy in the sight of God; without blemish and free of accusation. Considering how I felt a while ago, this amazing expression of Christ’s love really encourages and comforts me. I am reconciled and in relationship with my God because of Jesus Christ.
What is required for the doubts, worries and accusations to have little sting or impart little damage or impact?
Paul exhorts me to “…continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel” (New International Version, Colossians 1:23a).
The word ‘continue’ comes from the Greek transliterated word epimeno. Epimeno means to abide, remain, tarry and persevere in the work, in the action, in the teaching and in the blessings we have received in Christ.
The faith I have received is established and firm. It cannot be moved. Ever.
What can be moved?
When the right button is pushed, I can allow doubts, worries and accusations to unsteady me. Before I remember the truth that Christ’s physical body died for these very same doubts, worries and accusations, these fears have the potential to tip me over into a sea of shame.
Like I wrote, I can be a ding dong.
I just need to remember that I stand on a firm and steady foundation where hope and strength in Christ is offered. The hope of Christ is held out to me at all times; especially when the accusations and untruths are hurled with willful intent or lack of consideration. For just as John’s words of encouragement and steady shoulder caused my doubts and fears to wash away, my Savior does the same for you and for me at all times. His physical body already endured the wrath of accusation and shame. The feelings of insecurity I experience today have already been dealt with once and for all when “…Christ brought peace through his blood, shed on the cross” (New International Version, Colossians 1:20b).
When I envision that my Savior shed his blood on the cross for my worries, my doubts, my fears, my accusations, my insecurities, and my ding-dong behavior, I fall to my knees in humility. There is no other place to go before my God. He instills peace within my heart, soul and mind.
I don’t know if you ever fall victim to worry, accusation or fear when your buttons of vulnerability are pushed. However, if the accusations are cast or the worries rise up, remember this: your faith cannot be moved as the hope of Christ is being held out to you. You can’t be tipped over into the sea of shame because Christ alone holds you close and holds you steady.
Such assurance will bring us both peace of heart, soul and mind. Jesus brought us this peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
Don’t be a ding-dong like me and forget that!
Photo from http://escapetoreality.org/2014/03/12/continue-in-the-faith-colossians-123/