In the day and age that we live in, there's a great deal of attention paid to what we look like on the outside. We spend a lot of time thinking about what we wear, our hair, makeup, shoes, what kind of car we drive, what kind of house we live in, what kind of job we have, whether we have our own office, and even what kind of computer we have. However, we can look great on the outside but still be an absolute, total wreck on the inside.
It's easy for me to understand this tendency because that's the way I was for many years. I marched off to church every week without fail. My husband was an elder in the church, I was on the church board, and our kids went to school there. But at home behind closed doors, it was another story.
Every week, I dressed up and went to church. Every day, I dressed up and went to work-I looked great on the outside. But inside, my mind was a mess, my emotions were a mess and my attitudes were a mess. I felt guilty all the time. I didn't know who I was in Christ, and I was very insecure.
It took me years to realize that was no way to live. Trying to impress other people and make them think that you have it all together is not living. Jesus didn't die for us so we could pretend to be something we're not. He didn't die for us so we could all be under a bunch of pressure to be like someone else. Jesus came to restore the lost, and to make us whole in body, soul and spirit.
The first step to spiritual wholeness is so simple. Jesus said it in Matthew 11:28: Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls] (The Amplified Bible). In this verse, Jesus is simply saying, "Come as you are and we'll start from there; I'll take you just the way you are and we'll start on the journey together." We're all on a journey, step-by-step with the Lord toward spiritual wholeness.
I believe that the greatest gift you can give your family and the world is a healthy you. And God wants to help you get healthy…in every way. You see, you are a spirit, you have a soul, and you live in a body. You have emotions, you have thoughts, you have a will, and you have a conscience. You are a complex being! And Jesus came to heal every single part of you. There's not one part that He doesn't want to make completely whole.
Jesus offers us what I like to call the Divine Exchange – He takes our sin, misery and mess and gives us His righteousness, peace and joy. But you have to make your mind up that you're going to have what Jesus died for you to have to get it. No matter how much someone else wants it for you, the truth is, if you don't want it, you won't have it.
It's time for you to stop putting up with anything less than complete wholeness. Stop making excuses, start taking responsibility for your actions, and realize that you reap what you sow. Be determined to obey God so you can have the restoration He offers through the sacrifice Jesus made – just for you! Jesus wants you to be real. He wants to make you whole-inside and out.