“You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”
“I already feel so stupid for doing this–for getting rid of easy clients, for thinking I can actually make friends…”
That’s the first sentence of a journal entry dated 4.19.2021, literally just one day after I decided to quit social media and pursue intentional relationships in my life. ONE DAY and I already struggled with my decision. Fortunately, I know one truth… the Devil is a liar.
“I’m sure it’s just the enemy talking, but he sure is loud… Also, I’m starting to think maybe I have some type of social anxiety because just messaging people or trying to make plans is so hard and intimidating for me…”
The Devil is a Liar, and He is Loud
It’s crazy to me how quickly the enemy starts chirping in your ear as soon as you start to do something good, something God-approved. I know the decision to pursue friendships and build community is right for my life. I mean, the Bible says to do it… how much more confirmation do you need than that? However, even when we are doing something we know is in God’s will, the enemy does his best to distract and discourage us.
I have never in my life thought I actually have social anxiety. Sure, I’m an introvert and am shy at first so it’s always been a little harder for me to make the “first move” in relationships, even just platonic friendships. But as soon as I start to muster the courage to get over that fear and try even when it’s uncomfortable, the next thing I know I’m self-diagnosing myself with a mental health condition that tries to tell me I cannot do what I plan on doing. How convenient.
Yes, the Devil is a liar. Yes, he is loud. But, he never gets the final word.
“GRACE: I can see I’m doing a lot all at once. It’s ok that it’s hard. It will get better. God is on my side, or, better yet, I’m on his.”
Even when we are doing something we know is in God’s will, the enemy does his best to distract and discourage us.
God is on Your Side
What lies is the enemy screaming in your ear today? How do you know they are lies? And, more importantly, do you know the truth? Here are some of mine:
Lie: “You have social anxiety.”
Truth: I am introverted and shyer than others, but God gives me the courage to make the first move and build community like he’s called me to do.
Lie: “Nobody else feels this way.”
Truth: This simply isn’t true. And while I knew this before I started reaching out to people, my first few conversations with potential friends have proved it. Other people have actually told me they understand how I’m feeling and experience the same struggles when it comes to building close female friendships. I’m not the only one, and neither are you.
Lie: “You’re the weirdo because you don’t have any friends.”
Truth: Making friends as an adult is hard. It’s not the craziest thing in the world to struggle to find friends. As you get older, life gets busier and you have to be intentional about establishing and maintaining relationships. This isn’t easy, and many people find themselves in their 20s and 30s without friends. Not because they don’t want them but because life happens.
Lie: “Nobody else needs anymore friends.”
Truth: Even if people have a great group of friends, it doesn’t mean they won’t want to be friends with me. Who knows, maybe I can add something to their circle that’s been missing. You never know.
Lie: “You’re not going to live in Redding forever, so why even try to make friends here?”
Truth: This one has kept me from pursuing friendships for 5 years. When I first moved to this city, I wasn’t planning on staying long, so I didn’t feel the need to pursue deep friendships. I’ve been here 5 years now… imagine if I would have started this journey when I first moved. Imagine if I wouldn’t have believed this lie. I’m not going to believe it anymore. Even if I move next year, at least this year will be filled with fun adventures with new people and maybe even life-long friends.
Yes, the Devil is a Liar, BUT Truth is a Powerful Thing
TRUTH is powerful. TRUTH is the only way to combat the lies of the enemy. And TRUTH only comes from God and his Word. The Devil is a liar, so when he is screaming lies in your ear, I encourage you to ask God to whisper truths. God’s voice is louder. It’s better. It’s filled with hope and empowerment, not hopelessness and defeat. God is on your side. Or, better yet, you are on his. And his side always wins.