Dena Johnson Martin Christian Blog and Commentary

Fact or Fiction?

Have I ever mentioned that I love my kids?

I might be partial, but I have some pretty amazing kids. But sometimes, I see lies creeping into their lives.

Maybe it’s during my late-night heart-to-heart discussions with my 16 year-old. (See? My teenager still talks to me! I told you I had amazing kids!) Or maybe I see the lies during a one-on-one date with my 13 year-old. Or sometimes I hear them during a mommy-daughter pedicure morning.

The lies can come from school. From frustration over health concerns. From basketball coaches who fail to look beyond the court. From being around other teens who are bigger, stronger. From being left out of important events by their peers. From male-female relationships.

As I listen to them talk, I hear the unspoken:

“I’m not good enough.”

“I’m a failure.”

“I’m rejected.”

My heart aches for them, even as I do my best to change their mindset, to point them back to the truth of God’s word. They allow the enemy to step in, to fill their minds with lies, lies that ultimately lead to destruction.

It’s probably pretty easy to pick out the lies others believe. But what lies do you believe?

After learning about my husband’s affair, I remember the absolute hatred I had for myself. I would get up each morning, look in the mirror. The words that went through my mind while staring at my reflection were ugly, filled with self-hatred.

“Just look at you. You are so ugly. It’s no wonder he chose someone else.”

“You are so fat. No one could ever love you. You don’t deserve to be loved.”

“You are a failure. You weren’t enough to keep your husband happy.”

“God is so disappointed in you. Your failed marriage reflects so negatively on him. You are unfit for the Kingdom, completely disqualified from ever serving God in ministry again.”

One morning, as I looked in the mirror and heard the condemning voices yet again, I. Got. Mad. Really, really mad! Whatever happened to the confident, joy-filled woman I had once been? Where was the woman who loved God, loved people, loved life? What happened to the woman who had hidden the truths of scripture in her heart since she was a child, always seeking to take up the mind of Christ in all circumstances?

Somehow, some way, through the rejection and pain, the voices of guilt and condemnation were screaming so loudly the truth was being choked out of my life and my mind.

Somehow, some way, I determined it was time to reject the lies being thrown at me and replace them with the truth of scripture.

Somehow, some way, I made the decision to become the best version of Dena I could possibly become.

It’s been a process, a journey, but today I enjoy living in the truth of God’s word. I revel in what he says about me rather than the lies of the enemy.

Perhaps, like me, you believe voices that condemn and bring guilt. Perhaps you hear the voices of self-hatred yelling loudly in your ears. Perhaps you are losing the battle for your mind.

If so, it’s time to play a little game of Fact or Fiction:

Fact or Fiction: The Holy Spirit’s voice is one of condemnation.

Fiction. According to scripture, there is no condemnation in Christ Jesus. Voices of condemnation do not come from God; instead, the Holy Spirit’s voice comes to lovingly convict us of our sins, to draw us back to him. If you hear voices condemning you, you are not hearing the Holy Spirit.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:1-2

But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you. John 14:26

Fact or Fiction: Sin disqualifies you from ministry.

Fiction: According to Romans 11:29, God’s call on your life is irrevocable. His gifts are never withdrawn. No sin, no failure, is ever great enough to separate you from God. Everything is forgiven when we confess and repent of our sins.

For God’s gifts and his call can never be withdrawn. Romans 11:29

Fact or Fiction: You are a one-of-a-kind masterpiece created by God himself with a special purpose set long ago.

Fact. Loser? Never! Not good enough? Hardly! God’s words should echo through your mind. You were created for a purpose, one God planned for you long ago. You were lovingly crafted in your mother’s womb by God himself. You are perfect, enough, exactly as He created you.

You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. Psalm 139:13-16

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10

Fact or Fiction: God rejects me because of my divorce (or addiction or adultery or pride or lust or…)

Fiction: No sin, no matter how large or small, can ever cause God to reject you! He chose you! He loves you deeply, intimately, unconditionally. You are his!

…you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9

When we become a new creation in Christ Jesus, the old is gone and we are made completely new (2 Corinthians 5:17). Our sins are wiped away. Our past is made spotless. We are covered by the blood of our Savior Jesus Christ, who gave up his own life for our sins.

But how do we replace the lies that may be planted deep within our minds? We take up the mind of Christ. We are transformed by the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2). We tell ourselves the truth repeatedly, every moment of every day. When we hear those old voices creeping in, telling us lies, we immediately take them captive to the obedience of Christ. As soon as we recognize those old voices, we replace them with the truth.

Practically speaking, write important verses on note cards and post them on your bathroom mirror, in your car, or anywhere else you will see them. Read them frequently, throughout the day. When a lie creeps into your mind, quote these scriptures to yourself.

Here are some great words and scriptures to help get you started.

I am…Forgiven. But you are a God of forgiveness, gracious and merciful, slow to become angry, and rich in unfailing love… Nehemiah 9:17b-18

I am…Redeemed. Remember that we are the people you chose long ago, the tribe you redeemed as your own special possession! Psalm 74:2

I am…Chosen. But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9

I am…the Apple of his Eye. Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings. Psalm 17:8

I am…a Child of the King. See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! 1 John 3:1

You, my friend, are beautiful, special, amazing! You are loved deeply, intimately by the Creator of the universe. You are treasured, chosen by God himself. He wants nothing more than to see you living in the truth so you can fulfill his purpose for you. Let’s fill our minds with the facts of God’s words rather than the lies of the enemy.