Can we talk about “self-denial?”


It’s ME!! Hi friends!!

Wow! What a title? I know we live in a generation of self-love, self-acceptance, self-worth, self-esteem, self-care, and all the other self-whatever, and I am all the way here for it. But all these ideologies promote not denying ourselves anything and basically just satisfying just ourselves. Listen, there is nothing wrong with these things, but I think we also need to discuss self-denial and how we shouldn’t have EVERYTHING that WE WANT!! People say things like, it is my year of being selfish, no sis, bro, abort the mission. Being selfish is not “it” and it isn’t the answer. that was just by the way…

Recently, I have been feeling like my desires are not aligning with what God wants of me. I know this because when I pray about something and I get the answer, I am literally fighting it, twisting it to accommodate me and what I want, I am flat out telling God to try giving me another answer because this one “is a NO for me.” This tension is making me very much uncomfortable and my heart is achy and I am just not happy.

So I’ve just been sensing in my heart that self-denial is what is needed just for a little bit of time. I actually don’t know the time frame, but I know I just need to deny myself certain things for a little while and attend to what God has for me in this season. Although I know the answer to the problem of this achy thing in my heart, self-denial seems like it is going to be more painful, like the achy thing in my heart is going to be multiplied by 10. Obedience is so painful. I know some seasoned matured Christians find joy in obedience, but right now, in this moment, I can’t relate to the joy. Surrendering doesn’t make me feel lighter, it doesn’t lift any anxiety or burden of me.

I hope when you read this you don’t get the sense that I feel like I have entered martyrdom by giving up my earthly desires to submit to the will of God. That isn’t the message here and if I communicated it that way, well, it isn’t what I meant. ha! But I just wanted to share that sometimes, we pray the will God and sometimes, the answer is not so joyful and it is far away from what we truly desire in our hearts. I just wanted to share my struggles with obedience and maybe help someone know that they are not alone.

But most importantly, I want you to know, that God will always honor your obedience. It may look different than you expected but He is faithful and sees you.

This is more for me. Sometimes, the will of God might seem like punishment, but I just want you know that, it isn’t. God is not purposely trying to make your life hard or harder than it seem. Tim Keller (more about him later in a different post) said, and I am paraphrasing. He said, we need to remember that we do not see the whole picture and so all that we see is in front of us, for if God showed us the entirety of of our life and where we were heading, we will come to know that the temporary pain, however severe it might feel, is the least amount of pain God is allowing us to go through now to avoid the MEGA pain.

So basically, this struggle, sacrifice, or self-denial for however long it takes is the least of pains if you choose to obey and heed to His words. I hope that makes sense, if I find the exact words I will share it with you.

Denying yourself and obedience to God’s will is a struggle but the truth is, God is so faithful and so kind! just remember that.

In what ways are being led to deny yourself? 


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