I’m sure you know what a GPS is — it’s a guidance system (to keep you on the right course). This generation doesn’t remember paper maps, but almost everyone uses the built-in GPS on their phone for navigation. The reason is, it’s easy to get lost on our own, which is why we need directions and help.
Life is like this too. We need a guidance system.
Hebrews 6:19 says, “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast…” An anchor is something that holds you steady and solid, no matter what you face or what comes against you. It keeps you from drifting off. People often end up in left field (in life) and don’t know how they got there. But the answer is found in something I call the “16th inch” — that smallest part on your ruler.
A 16th inch error, when used to measure a ground foundation, can’t even be seen with the naked eye. But build a sky scraper and it’ll show up in dangerous ways. This is why people get out in left field and don’t know how they got there— that little bit of error (lack of a guidance system or an anchor) multiplied over and over leads us astray from God’s Truth.
But God has given us a truth called righteousness to keep us on track.
It’s a big-sounding Bible word but it’s packed full of freedoms and truths and benefits. Much like my maxed-out suitcase at the airport when I fly. My suitcase looks like one big thing, but really it’s a container for many things. This is righteousness too.
And it’s important to unpack this suitcase (maybe for the first time) and discover things you didn’t know God did for you or gave you, and especially how He sees you.
The first challenge you’ll encounter in understanding righteousness is: how do you see yourself?
How we view ourselves will always have a greater impact on our lives than how we see God. Earnest Holmes said, “Life is a mirror and will reflect back to the thinker what he thinks into it.” With the best of intentions, our friends and family can tell us how wonderful and loved we are, even tell us how much God loves us, but unless we believe it for ourselves, the unknown lies we believe can actually squelch our dreams, mask truth, and redefine our destiny.
Proverbs 23:7 says, “For as he thinks [calculates] in his heart, so is he.” So what are you thinking? Because that’s your GPS.
Romans 12:2 reminds us to “…let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” Your spirit was born-again at salvation —which means you received that big ‘ole suitcase full of eternal life, the spirit of God, and all the benefits of a life in Christ! But after salvation, your spirit has to switch the natural dominion from your soul (your mind, will, and emotions) to God’s Truth. In other words, our soul was not born-again. It must be renewed.
And here’s the top reasons why people get off-course: They’re not born-again (therefore, have no guidance system); they didn’t receive Christ until much later in life (therefore, there’s a a lot of necessary reprogramming); or they were introduced to religion instead of relationship (so they believe you have to earn God’s favor). The list could literally go on and on, but you get the picture.
These problems are common. It doesn’t matter who you are or what you’ve done. It’s not a gender problem, or a race problem, or a status problem. Understanding who you are in Christ and how God sees you is a believer problem. Satan does NOT want you to live by God’s guidance system. He doesn’t want you to have an anchor that will hold you steady no matter what he throws your way. In fact, one of the hardest lessons I ever learned was that: Satan’s best-laid plan has always been for us to destroy ourselves first.
And that’s easy to do when there’s no GPS, no anchor, or no Truth (no understanding of righteousness). Satan simply targets our insecurities and then laughs at our self-destruction.
But righteousness is God’s “right” system. I didn’t have it as a child or young person. I found out later that God gave it to me when I was saved at the age of 21, but my view of myself at that time overrode most of the new system. You’ve done it too. When the GPS said, “Turn right” you ignored it and kept going because that’s what you’ve always done. You overrode the system by your own thoughts and actions.
I was thankful for salvation but my goal was to survive until I reached heaven and could finally be free from the condemnation (the stinkin’ thinkin’) that tainted everything about me. I believed if the goal was to be “like Jesus,” I had already blown that a million times over and nothing could change or reverse it. But what I didn’t fully realize is that God sent Jesus because He knew we needed saving.
Someone once asked me, “Why are we so hard on ourselves? Why is this so hard to accept?” Simple. Because we live with ourselves! We know what God is forgiving, but we act like He didn’t know it before He paid the price for it.
I finally discovered truth in front of my mirror when God revealed this truth to me: “If anyone is in Christ Jesus, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). We look at our reflection in the mirror all the time, but we only see our exterior and that’s as far as we look. But God is able to see straight into our hearts –into who we truly are (and for the believer, He sees Christ).
So it doesn’t matter who you are. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done (or not done). We all need to know how God sees us. And we all need to see ourselves the same way. This is your guidance system.