I used to pray a very dumb prayer. And I prayed this seemingly spiritual, but definitely unbiblical prayer for years.
The prayer: Lord, empty me of myself and fill me with You.
I prayed this prayer in an effort to be humble.
I prayed this prayer in an effort to feel qualified.
I prayed this prayer in an effort to overcome my great sense of unworthiness.
I prayed this prayer in an effort to bypass my insecurity.
I prayed this prayer as an apology for every negative thing I perceived I was and every positive thing I perceived I was not.
Bottom line: This was a prayer forged in self effort, not Spirit empowerment.
But Jesus did not come to strengthen our self effort, He came to empower us with His Spirit so that we could finally be everything God intended for us to be.
One day when I prayed this prayer for what must have been the 1000th time, God answered me…
“I chose you before the world was even created.” [Ephesians 1:4]
“I blessed you with every spiritual blessing.” [Ephesians 1:3]
“I made you a co-heir with Christ.” [Romans 8:17]
“I put my very Spirit in you.” [Romans 8:11]
“I gave you Christ’s mind so I could share my ways and thoughts with you.” [1 Corinthians 2:16]
“I made you strong.” [Isaiah 41:10]
“You are more than a conqueror.” [Romans 8:37]
“You are righteous.” [Romans 3:21-24]
“You are victorious.” [1 John 5:4]
“You are whole.” [Colossians 2:10]
“You are healed.” [1 Peter 2:24]
“You are bold.” [2 Corinthians 3:12]
“You are free.” [John 8:36]
“You are the light of the world.” [Matthew 5:14]
“You have my characteristics.” [Galatians 5:22-23]
“You are my child.” [1 John 3:1]
“You are my partner.” [1 Corinthians 3:9]
“You are my ambassador.” [2 Corinthians 5:20]
“You are my masterpiece.” [Ephesians 2:10]
“You are my friend.” [John 15:15]
“You are my beloved.” [Jeremiah 31:3]
“I delight in you.” [Zephaniah 3:17]
“And you want me to empty you? No.”
Friends, it’s time we stop focusing on all that we perceive we are not, and start focusing on all that we already are.
I understand the intense desire to be successful, impressive, and attractive (my braces are proof…I’m trying SO HARD to be pretty).
I know the dismal feeling of not having life figured out and feeling so far behind everyone else.
I’m familiar with the pain of rejection, burnout, failure, and disappointment.
But none of these things will ever hold a higher valuation than the word of God over me or you. They hold no power of definition over our destinies.
If we live our lives fixated on the temporary things this world prioritizes, we undermine the very brilliance of who we are.
I may not know you personally or the specifics surrounding your life, but I’m very confident in attaching all that is listed above to you because I know who made you. And your Maker doesn’t produce shoddy work.
Honor God by celebrating what He made. Honor God by agreeing with His word over you.
Start today. To repent simply means to change your mind. Change your mind about who and what will define you moving forward.
Not the past.
Not people’s perceptions (including your own negative thoughts).
Not possessions, platforms, or positions.
Not a puffed up version of yourself you need to parade around for praise.
Be defined by His word.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” [Jeremiah 29:11]
P.S. Click the button below to download a printable version of the “Who I Am” list. Print it out and stick up somewhere you can see it every day. Read it. Say it out loud. This list doesn’t just belong to me, it belongs to you! I encourage you to make it your own — add to it, redesign it, share it…