Here is a timeless affirmation for those doubting their ability to do, be or become.
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me". Philippians 4:13
Soul-invigorating and confidence-lifting, it is probably the most widely quoted Bible scripture by believers and non-believers alike.
I was standing on a ledge and I could see the top of the trees some distance off and maybe hundreds of feet below. I was holding on for dear life, mortally afraid to take a leap into the unknown.
Plagued by ‘What If's’, I doubt very much that anything could have allayed my fears. It was only the intense embarrassment caused by the impatient and indignant stares of the people behind me that I finally took a deep breath, said a prayer, and let go. I mustered the courage from somewhere because I was whizzing down the zipline, though the marching band in my heart threatened the steady inhale and exhale rhythm.
Ziplining may be fun for a lot of people, but thanks to my fear of heights, I was terrified to the core. I mean who in their right mind would leave the solid footing and safety of the ground to go sliding through the air on a 2-inch-thick cable? Admittedly, by the third or fourth line, once I felt assured that it was unlikely that I would fall, I began to enjoy the adventure. I should have emboldened myself with 'I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength'.
This “I Can” promise is for those who are in Christ, that is, by commitment and character. Those persons also declare:
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20 ESV)
In my teenage years, Christianity must have been postured as a host of rules about things that I could not do because I wondered who would willingly step into that type of bondage. Everything that I liked and which came naturally seemed to be off-limits.
This rules-based, dictatorial illustration of Christianity and our relationship with God was, and probably still is, the most deceptive and misleading representation of Kingdom-life. Instead of restrictions and rules, being in Christ means that you can freely live your life with infinite declarations of “I Can’s”.
With this scripture as your mantra, you’ll perceive the world as being full of opportunity and optimism.
I can be a strong and resilient leader…
I can be a devoted wife/husband and dedicated mother/father…
I can fulfill all my dreams and accomplish all my goals…
I can be whole and confident despite past failure and rejection…
I can be a supportive friend and cheerful giver…
I can attain my fullest potential; and
I can be everything that God created me to be …
God didn’t call us to Himself to place yokes of restriction on us. Instead, He called us to true freedom from limiting thoughts, characteristics, and habits that impede the destiny that He’s created for us.
In the Garden of Eden, the cunning serpent used the same lie of limitations, by pointing out the one thing that Eve could not do, and in so doing she ignored everything else that God said she could do.
To this day Satan continues to deceive people by masking the freedom we have in Christ as bondage, so that people continue to choose to hold on to their brokenness and sin instead of trusting our good and faithful God.
This is the fact about those “limitations”; it is not that ‘I can’t do this’ or ‘can’t do that’, it is very much a case of “I don’t want to!" What I can do in and through Christ is so much more rewarding than those things I choose not to do because I carry the name of Jesus Christ.
Through the transformative power of Jesus in us, we no longer have a desire for the things we once desired, and neither do we feel as though we’re missing out. In fact, we are quite content, operating as obedient sheep within the pasture, protection, and provision of our Good Shepherd.
It makes sense to use the power of your “I can” to propel you to live in line with the will of God.
You can do anything and everything through Christ who gives you strength because with Jesus as your Saviour and God as your Father, the things that you can’t do are incomparable to the mountains you will root up and doors that you will kick down with your “I Can’s!”
Yes! You Can!
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