For most of life, I had a spirit of “religious duty”. I thought the more good things I did, the more faithful I was, the more I attended church, the more God would love me. In essence, I was working for my salvation and acceptance.
The problem with that is if I can “earn” God’s acceptance, then I could “lose” God’s acceptance.
So I lived this dual life. On the outside I was confident, praised for my faithfulness, viewed as this mature Christian. But inwardly, I was insecure, jealous, fearful. I was a little girl working desperately to be loved, to be accepted.
So how was I delivered from this hamster wheel of working? A word from God.
One morning He quietly spoke a life-changing truth into my heart. He said, “Melissa, your good works are not a vie for my love but a response to my love.”
And just like that, the hamster wheel life style I had perfected ended. I found true freedom.
When you know, truly know, you can’t mess this life in Christ up, you become free to soar. When the fear of stepping out of His will is removed, you are free to take risk and do great exploits with Him and not for Him. When you settle in your heart, once and for all, His love for you is not dependent upon your “perfect” behavior but solely upon His unconditional love for you, true abundant life begins.
Now don’t get me wrong, every now and then, I feel the temptation to get back on the hamster wheel. It’s the thought, “if I want to make this happen then I need to work harder, pray longer, give more.” But then God just looks at me, shakes his head, smiles and says, “I love you, baby girl, why are striving?” And then I once again put away my hamster wheel and find rest in Him.
Receive this prayer this morning.
“May God grant you a greater revelation of His unconditional love and acceptance. May it be settled in your hearts once and for all that God loves you unconditionally. Know God accepts you with no strings attached. He loves you because He is good and not because of your good works. May you be released from your life on the hamster wheel and find freedom from striving to be loved and accepted. May you find peace and rest knowing you are loved and accepted in Him. May you see His face smiling upon you. May you hear Him singing over you. May you hear His voice whispering, “I love you, my child. Why are you striving for what I have already freely given you.” May your hamster wheel lifestyle end today. Amen”
“And you did not receive the “spirit of religious duty,” leading you back into the fear of never being good enough. But you have received the “Spirit of full acceptance,” enfolding you into the family of God. And you will never feel orphaned, for as he rises up within us, our spirits join him in saying the words of tender affection, “Beloved Father!””
Romans 8:15 TPT