Not long ago I was laying in bed trying to fall asleep. I had to get up early for work in the morning, and since I already wasn’t feeling the upcoming workday, I was on edge and downcast. Suddenly my mind started spinning, as it tends to do when I lay down, and I contemplated the previous few minutes.
I had hugged my husband goodnight before I retired for bed, and he had seemed more quiet than usual.
Was he mad at me or something?!
And it wasn’t just him, I realized as my thoughts continued to spiral. My children had barely given me even a perfunctory hug before running off to their room. I told them I had to work, but they didn’t seem phased one way or the other. It was like I missed them more than they did me, and only one out of three had greeted me when I came home that night.
They don’t even care about me.
I used to stay home more, while my husband worked more. Now our roles had reversed. It seemed to me that since I had started working more they didn’t care about me as much.
Their Dad is their favorite now.
I thought about the people I loved, the people I worked to provide for, and I wondered if they even thought about me when I wasn’t around.
I could just leave right now, and they probably wouldn’t even bat an eye.
I don’t matter. I’m just a paycheck, a cell phone to play with, or a maid when required.
Even as these asinine thoughts ran rampant in my mind I knew they were ridiculous.
This is crazy business!
Yet there they were, lies straight from the pit of hell, trying their best to take root in my mind. I knew they weren’t true, but that one part of me wondered if perhaps they could be. It was that part of me that fell victim to the devil when he whispered untruths in my hormonal, emotionally unstable (at times), tired mind. I knew these thoughts were lies, but a part of me thought maybe they could be true, even if it was only for a moment.
Women are unique creations. God made us strong enough to survive the pain of childbirth, yet gentle enough to cradle a tiny baby to our breast. He made us stoic enough to deal with pain and loss, in all its many forms, yet soft enough to feel and empathize with the pain and loss of others. He made us mighty enough to hold the weight of worry for our families on our shoulders, yet submissive enough to bend to Him for help. He made us ferocious enough to fight to the death for our children, yet kind enough to wipe the tears from those children’s eyes when someone hurt them. He made us capable of love, sacrifice, and the wherewithal to endure both. The Lord created something very special in woman, and I believe Satan knows it. So he does his best to wreck the plans God has for us by inserting his lies into our life.
We believe we are not appreciated by our family. Or perhaps that we’re not needed. We read into their behaviors things that are not even there. We feel used, neglected, and undervalued. We may even feel as if our family could do better without us. These were the thoughts my mom had before attempting to take her own life. I believe that sometimes maybe we are taken for granted in a hurried, packed life, but the devil would multiply our feelings of disregard and make us blind to how truly appreciated we are.
We believe we’re too fat, too thin, too flabby, or too flat. The devil will blind our eyes to our own beauty, and whisper in our ears, “you’ll never be enough.”
But God would remind us,
Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. (Luke 12:7) You are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you. (Isaiah 43:4)
Satan will tell us we don’t fit in, that the group of women we’re interacting with do not like us. We’ll compare our flaws to their perfections, see their mothering skills as superior to our own, and feel as if we could never master their level within the Mom Clique.
Yet God would want us to know,
We are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10 ESV)
We will believe our husbands no longer find us attractive, that our children no longer think we’re fun. We will feel less. We will feel like we’re failing. We will feel inadequate and unworthy of the life we have.
But God would have us proclaim in joy,
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. (Psalm 139:13-16 ESV)
Satan will make us believe we aren’t good at the things we try, that we don’t have talents worth anything, especially for God’s kingdom. We will be afraid to step out, fearful to try something new, worried about failing. What will people think?!
But God would say,
It is dangerous to be concerned with what others think of you, but if you trust the Lord, you are safe. (Proverbs 29:25 GNT)
We will believe our problems are bigger than they actually are. We’ll make mountains out of molehills. We’ll even concern ourselves with thoughts of what could have happened if, and we’ll obsess about things from the past that were out of our control. We’ll overthink everything! We’ll stay up at night, losing sleep over the things we cannot change. We’ll invent problems that aren’t even there. It will make us blind to the real things God has for us to think about.
Then God would whisper,
Finally, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. (Phillipians 4:8 NIV)
That night as I lay in bed with ridiculous yet stabbing thoughts I stood firm in knowing they were not true. They didn’t align with what God said about me, and I knew they were from the pit of hell. In truth, my children adored me, and so did my spouse. They showed me this always, but Satan would take one bad night and make it appear like something it wasn’t. That’s what the Father of Lies does. He makes us believe the bad, forget the good, hold on to [the] offense, and lose sight of happiness in our lives. He’s like the lemon juice to our paper cut or the Debbie Downer of our subconscious. His plot is to derail us from the plans the Lord has for our life, plans to prosper us and give us hope. Remember, he comes in like a lion to devour and destroy you.
So when thoughts come that seem in opposition to God’s Word, when thoughts come that condemn you, cause you fear, or fill you with sadness and self-hate, stand firm in who you are in Jesus and fix your mind on who He says you are.