I hear this voice speaking truth but the voice is too smooth and the tone is condemning. It's like the vacuum salesman that makes you feel like a terrible housekeeper and tries to sell you a remedy you know you can't afford.
You don't have enough time to...
You didn't do a good job on...
You shouldn't have done...
He's reminding me of my failures and all the places I fall short, and the bummer is that he's right.
But I thought the devil was always wrong?
My head swirls with the lynch-list of my failings and even if it's just my own thoughts recounting all the misdeeds, he's right there to confirm them.
Except he's leaving out the most important thing, of course: grace.
He attempts to drag me down with powerful truth, but he neglects to mention the power that raised me up from certain death. Or better yet, he forgets that I'm already dead but I live in Christ. This makes a difference, because most of the truth he speaks to me is about fear.
And once you've reconciled your death, you can put fear in proper perspective.
He skirts the truth that I am loved in spite of my shortcomings and long-strivings, and he wants me to believe that all my mistakes are ruining my children.
(And curious, isn't it? How the replay always comes at bedtime, when the day is done and the kids are tucked in and all the words and actions of the day seem cemented?)
That's the tenderest spot in my heart, and repeatedly a bony finger pokes there. He replays the tears over math and the words over chores and the voices raised high over things we forgot we were arguing about. He keeps a good record.
Or maybe it's my record, but it's accurate except for what it leaves out. But for the grace of God, we're all doomed.
But for the grace of God.
The grace that gets left out is exactly what's missing. Every picture I paint at this time of day, in this frame of mind, is an accurate portrayal of life without Jesus. It has the same monotonous colors and brush strokes and the paint hardens if we wait too long.
It becomes our story if we allow it.
Tonight I'm going to beat him to the punch.
I didn't have enough time today to read that book to my child, but we planted the garden together instead and we put down a stake in a memory that will last.
(And I have all the time I need, thank you very much.)
I didn't do a good job on planning our dinner tonight, but sometimes spaghetti and salad an hour late is just the side dish to some good conversation, and we had that.
I shouldn't have spent that time on facebook, but I'll take those tidbits of peoples lives and pray over them tonight, and tomorrow I'll read that book to my child instead of checking facebook.
And this is the verse I cling to on nights like this:
For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. ~ Romans 5:10
I think I'm not the only one who replays the day with a condemning tone. How do you combat the half-truths of the day?