Several years ago, I started jogging. Prior to that I had never been much for any type of exercise. And honestly, I don’t know what got me started on it. But I remember how painful it was trying to make the switch from walking to jogging.
For a long time, I told myself, “I will never be able to jog a full mile without resting.” I am much too out of shape. I don’t have the body build to be a runner. My asthma will never allow me to do it.
I cannot tell you how many times I allowed these negative thoughts to keep me from even trying. These were all facts. I was out of shape. I didn’t have the typical physique of someone who frequently ran. And my asthma was a real concern, since I was using an inhaler daily to manage it.
And then one day, I pushed myself and jogged a full mile without stopping. It was then when I realized that the battle is often a mental battle. While all of these statements were factual (I was out of shape, I didn’t have the build of a runner, and I had asthma), they were not truths.
Which leads me to this thought… Could there be other beliefs (factual or not) that are preventing me from walking in everything God has for my life?
This “Giant” will fall…
Jonathan started a series this past Sunday on facing and defeating the “giants” in our lives. We all face them, no matter our gender, race, ethnicity, or age. These “giants” tower over us, hurl insults at us constantly, reminding us that we are less than.
And throughout his message, I was thinking about how my “giant” has to be my battle to be healthy. I have even declared over the past few days that this “giant” will fall in 2017. I am committed to gaining control of my health and walking in the best that the Lord has for me in that area.
But truthfully, there are many other “giants” in my life. It is as if they are lined up in a row. When one falls, the next one steps up, and so on. If it’s not the “giant of health”, it’s the “giant of fear”, or the “giant of doubt”.
And the “giants” you face could be similar to these, or completely different. It could be insecurity, debt, broken-relationships, loss of job, etc. The list is endless. And the struggle is real.
Not “giants” but “giant” …
I was thinking about some of this as Casey and I left the gym this evening and I came to the realization that I am not battling many giants. I am fighting a giant. It is singular, not plural. The giant I am actually fighting is in my head.
I am limited far more by my beliefs than anything else in life. And you are too! Before we can defeat this “giant”, regardless of how he is disguised, we have to win the battle in our mind. I have to believe that I can win the battle. I have to choose to believe the truth over the lies I have been believing.
The Apostle Paul wrote about this to one of the early churches,
“For though we walk in the flesh [as mortal men], we are not carrying on our [spiritual] warfare according to the flesh and using the weapons of man. 4 The weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood]. Our weapons are divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. 5 We are destroying sophisticated arguments and every exalted and proud thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought and purpose captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5 AMP, emphasis mine).
When I jogged a full mile without stopping, the giant of doubt in my mind disappeared. When Casey and I paid off the last of our debt, that “giant” fell, losing the power that he held over our lives for years. And this “giant” of poor health is going to fall, because I believe I can overcome it!
The battle is in your mind…
Paul said that he took “every thought and purpose captive to the obedience of Christ” (AMP).
What thought patterns do you need to take captive to the obedience of Christ? What beliefs are you holding onto that are limiting you from reaching your full potential? Remember that the battle is in your mind and you do have the power to overcome these giants! Quit doubting yourself and go kill that giant!