Thursday, November 1, 2012

How does my heart deceive me?

That was the subtitle to the sermon at church this weekend. I finally got a chance to search my was not pretty. Our pastor suggested there are 3 main ways we are deceived.  During the sermon I didn't think I really was being deceived, but wouldn't you seems I am in all 3 ways. Here are some cliff notes for you.

You are deceived when:

1.) You start defining yourself in terms of your success--One of the biggest tip-offs that you're into success idolatry is that you struggle to maintain self-confidence in life unless you're at the top of your chosen field.

2.) You start defining yourself in terms of other people around you--God meant for us to live in community with one another.  He made us into social beings,  but our sinful, idol-making hearts start expecting other people to do the one thing they were never designed to do - give us identity,  purpose, or hope.

3.)You start defining yourself in terms of your own performance in the Christian life--Christ died for SINNERS! And those sinners after being saved by grace will continue to fight and fall into sin between now and when Christ returns.

So...yeah :) I know it sounds funny, but the one example in my life of how all 3 ways I am deceived collide is...the grocery store. I'll try to explain :)

For the last 5ish years of our marriage I have done 95% of the grocery shopping in our home. I loved being able to cut coupons,  stock up on staple items for the cheap,  and save about 35-50% off our total bill. Fast forward to March. I get an awesome new job, but there is a catch... its more time out of the home than the previous 3 years when I was doing home health.  (Sidebar- I don't choose to work out of the home.  It is out of necessity.  We have a tiny mortgage,  old used cars paid for,  and virtually no debt. I HAVE to work,  I am so thankful God has provided a great job with good insurance and only part - time out of the home).  With this new job and more time out of the home, I have a lot less time to plan meals and coupon, and when I say less time...I mean no time :)  We signed up for eMeals. It is amazing and would be wonderful for a newly married couple or new mom. Basically they send you a meal plan each week with cooking instructions and a grocery list. 

It has really helped a ton, but I still end up spending a good $20-30 more per week at the grocery even with meal planning.  Each time I would checkout I would leave feeling defeated and honestly...ashamed.  I felt I should be a "better" homemaker than that.  I honestly felt like a loser. (Deceit #1).  This one is particularly hilarious (not that idolatry is hilarious) because not ONE SINGLE TIME in our marriage has Justin EVER said "Wow, Lauren you spent too much at the grocery. Get it together".

As I searched my heart more, I realized it was worse. I didn't just feel like a "loser" wife/mom/homemaker... I felt like a loser Christian! (Deceit #3). I wasn't thinking it at the time but when I really searched my heart I realized that each time I saw the total amount of money on groceries spent go up, I felt like I failed God too. (Total lie) So right now as I look around at my disaster of a house, laundry piling up everywhere, virtually no training/teaching done with Inara this week, and realizing tonight will be the first cooked meal I will have made all week long I am fighting hard to remember that I am NOT a loser. I am NOT a bad Mom. I am NOT a horrible wife. I am NOT disappointing God.  But rather this is a particularly busy season in our life, and the truth is that ONLY because of Christ...and not the state of my home:

I am forgiven

I am loved

I am redeemed

I am rejoiced over

I am God's daughter

I am accepted

I am righteous

I am sure with Shepherd's arrival this will be an even harder fight. But I am 100% sure it is worth the work to fight the good fight. Know the truth so I am deceived.  Let's fight together! 

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