We all have stories we tell ourselves about ourselves. Self-narratives if you will. If you’re like me some of those stories are negative and crippling. They are like tapes playing over and over in your head, and whenever a situation or opportunity comes up that triggers that self-narrative, the tape plays in your mind, paralyzing you.
Most of the time, these are tapes that we recorded when we were wounded. We developed some sort of story to defend ourselves from feeling pain. We recorded a tape that plays this story in our thoughts over and over again, successfully constructing a false-self. Some of us have played these tapes for so long that we are convinced they reflect who we really are. We spend energy, time, and life perpetuating the message we hear from the tapes, maintaining our false identities, and avoiding any kind of real intimacy with God and with others.
For many of us its time to burn those tapes. Its time to put to death the false self. Its time to stop listening to the crippling and broken songs we wrote out of woundedness and allow God to draw out our true selves. Its time to realize that God doesn’t just love us for who we ought to be, but for who we are, false-self and all. The Bible is filled of examples of God speaking a new identity into the broken.
“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.” Ps. 40:3
“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and have clothed me with joy.” Ps. 30:11
“The Spirit of the sovereign Lord is upon me and has appointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of our Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance for our God, to comfort all who mourn and provide for those who grieve in Zion–to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.” Is. 61:1-3
In drawing closer to God, he exposes the imposter, the stories we tell ourselves, and the broken songs we sing. He gives us a new identity and a true identity. He replaces the lies with the truth. In drawing closer to God, we draw closer to our true selves.
Its time to burn the tapes.