Your image before God is up to you, it is not up to Him
When God sees the believer, He sees the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus
The Believer must see himself this way too
Train yourself to see you as God sees you
Most believers however see themselves in the light of their performance, not in the light of the finished work of Christ
Thus, they end up feeling unworthy, dirty, unusable, and unuseful to God
They begin to quote scriptures that say all their righteousness is like filthy rags, they call themselves wretched and sullied
They create a mental picture of a sinner even though they are saints
How they see themselves reflects upon the way they speak, think, act, and even how they pray
They think they are practicing humility and this will help them to get answers to their prayers
They quote Luke 18: The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector
9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’
13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
They forget that the Parable Jesus used here was about two unsaved people who had not given their lives to Jesus nor experienced the benefits of the free gift of salvation
Ignorance is making them misapply themselves in the wrong context
They forget that after the death and resurrection of Jesus, all those who believe in Him and confess Him as Lord and Saviour receive the free gift of salvation which has no condition attached to it except believing in the Lord Jesus
John 3: 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.
If you read the book of Jeremiah, God said my ear is not dull to hear nor my hand short to deliver but your sin has separated you from me
God did not say Jeremiah’s sin separated Him from Jeremiah
It separated Jeremiah from God
The same thing happened between Adam and God
God came calling but Adam went to hide
God called Adam
Adam answered from his hiding place that he was naked and didnt want to see God
it was Adam who was separated from God by his own self-image
God was not separated from Adam
How the believer sees himself in the sight of God is totally a result of the mental picture the believer has of himself in his relationship with God
Paul said he was convinced that nothing could separate us from the love of Christ
How you think of yourself is how you present yourself before God
If I see myself as a useless sinner, worthless worm, and wretched sinner, God cannot input worth to me because I have already believed what I believe and would most likely conduct myself that way thinking it would make God benevolent or merciful towards me
Faith works both ways
You can be so affirmed in negativity, that it becomes substance and the negative continues to happen in your life because that is what you have set your faith and confession upon in your subconscious
In the same way, if you are affirmed in the positive
As a child of God, you need to start observing and thinking about your mental state
As a believer, there is a right way to pray and a wrong way to pray
People pray the wrong way when they have the wrong mindset
For example, when a believer sleeps in the Lord the relatives and friends of this Christian must not mourn like those who do not have hope
Hope here means an expectation that is programmed for the future
Unbelievers dont have this, they know the person who died is gone forever but the Word and the Spirit already told the believer that anyone who sleeps in Christ is not dead
Yet you will see many believers who lose a relative fall into depression, sometimes fall out of fellowship with God, and sometimes decide not to be Christians anymore and you wonder if they truly believe or have any knowledge of the faith they claim they are professing
Such believers are mentally weak and soon they will open their hearts to vain thoughts and imaginations that allow the enemy to hijack their minds and take over their imagination
The hope that comes from the Holy Spirit is a certain assurance that things will be okay but the world cannot have this certainty
A believer therefore needs to ask himself if he is just praying with his lips or if he knows what he or she truly believes and stand by this regardless of what may come their way
Ephesians 6: 10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and the power of his might.
11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
You can see that the helmet of Salvation was mentioned in vs 17, this is for “mind control”. You must preach the gospel to your mind daily until it is so taken over by the gospel that nothing the enemy, sin, or satan throws at it can ever convince it to turn away from the truth of the gospel
When that moment comes when you have to choose or deny Christ to save yourself or deny Christ to avoid trouble, only the mentally strong will not be shaken
When people write stuff about you or reject you or talk about you behind your back or label you or slander you, do you have the mental strength to bear it without being broken or lashing out in an unchristian manner?
When you are offered a juicy appointment but asked to denounce your faith, would you consider the temporal or stick with the everlasting?
The spoken word will always pull down the imaginations of the heart or affirm them
When you are having evil thoughts, you counter them by Speaking or talking the word
When Jesus was tempted, he was tempted in his mind but he countered the temptation by speaking the Word of God out loud
The Word of God was not meant to be read mentally, it is effective when it is spoken for it becomes quick, sharp, and accurate in its working in our lives
Evil imagination or even good imagination is pulled down by the Spoken Word or the sound of your voice
This is why we speak to pull down any imagination that is not of God
12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
Revelations open our eyes to the truth and the truth immediately sets us free from the shackles of the evil
Getting ready to fight your brothers and sisters in Christ is not mental toughness
No matter what has happened or what is happening, a calm spirit is a reflection of the right mental state
There is a certain way Jesus’ mind worked, Apostle Paul said we should let that same mindset be in us in Philippians 2:5
Imitating Christ’s Humility
2 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
6 Who, being in very nature[a] God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7 rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue acknowledges that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
It is important that we all truthfully and genuinely examine ourselves on the issue of mental toughness
Dont hide behind religion, how long you have been born again or any other factor
You should be able to tell yourself the truth about the areas of your life where you have been facing mental weaknesses and talk to the Lord about it
How to gain Mental Toughness
It is an exercise you have to do sincerely and dedicatedly to the point where it changes the reality you are walking in
If you have learned a certain culture from your old life and you didn’t do away with it after you have become a believer, it is most likely you will go back to that culture in the day of trouble because that is what you know
There are three books in the Bible that you ought to visit a chapter daily apart from your regular reading
The book helps in mental health strengthening
The three books help to develop the mind and re-focus your perspective
Imagine the worst thing you can go through and see God delivering you from it
The mind cannot tell the difference between what is real and what is not real
What you imagine and what happens to the mind are the same thing
This is why when someone consumes too much of a violent game or watches too much sexual content in a movie or too much emotional content in a movie, the person can begin to behave in a certain way due to what he or she watched in the movie
People have been known to cry or to get a gun and shoot people based on what they saw on TV which was absolute make-believe
Some of the greatest athletes are given tapes of other athletes doing stuff which they watch over and over again until they are doing the same effortlessly
This is why it is important to build up this way
It is how to build up faith and capacity
When you imagine what is to come and the way of escape, you build mental strength to such a degree that in the day of adversity, your mind does not panic
You are in charge and able to put the word of God to full effect in your life