In Lists We Trust

{The sixth installment in the In ____We Trust Series}

Glad to welcome Dana from Living in My Freedom to the blog today. She says: "I am a mother of four teenagers and married to an incredible man for 19 years. Life up to this point has been an adventure with so many stories to tell. I hope God can use my life's story to reach others and make an impact for the Kingdom."

I used to pride myself on the lists I could make and accomplish. Did you see that “pride myself” part? Yea… how many times have we all said that phrase? I’ll give you a little insight into my prideful list making. Consider if this hits a nerve with you.

In the morning, I’d get my handy little note pad, with lines of course, and make my list of duties for the day. These were things I wanted to accomplish and would feel good if everything was crossed off, especially if I could do it by 3pm because then I could enter into the super-mom realm.  I would list them, sometimes alphabetically, in order of importance and by category… control-freak anyone?

In case you are wondering, my grocery lists were in categories, by isle of the store. I had a separate list of dinners for the week.

Here’s the kicker though, when I crossed things off the list, my “worthy meter” would go up a little. My worthy meter determined my worthiness of love, acceptance and ability to contribute to life.  Achievement based, conditional love.

So the major issue and fear I faced at the end of the day was if there were things I could not accomplish, I felt like the day was a failure…. actually that I was, in fact, a failure. If my list was completed I’d wave it around like an Olympian gold medal, shaking my little imaginary empty cup for others to fill it full of love and worthiness. If I didn’t finish the whole list, no one saw the list, even the things I’d done, I’d sulk and be surly to my family, which was an expression of how worthless I felt inside.

My worthy-meter determined my worthiness of love, acceptance, and ability to contribute to life.

I am so excited to report that Christ didn’t let me sink in that pit of feeling unworthy!!

worthy complete

He came to my rescue and I learned about my true worth in Christ. I have known for years in my head, it just hadn’t translated to my perfectionist, overachieving heart.

God’s Word says the following about me, oh and by the way…I can do nothing to earn it!

  • I am the apple of His eye- Zechariah 2:8
  • I am a Saint- Ephesians 2:19
  • I am redeemed and forgiven (Hallelujah!)- Ephesians 1:7
  • I am free from condemnation- Romans 8:1
  • I am established, anointed and sealed by God- 2 Corinthians 1:21-22
  • and most of all I am complete in Christ! – Colossians 2:10

Before you head into a place where you feel sorry for my feelings of worthlessness or identify and maybe think it’s not that bad…it was sin, plain and simple.

My inflated pride of thinking I was something and could earn God’s love fueled my clear unbelief of who God says I am through Christ. The fact that I called myself worthless when Christ called me worthy of dying for (and not believing that I am complete in Him) altered my view of my identity.

I had idolized the list! Placing the list above God.

god is god

What broke me free from worthlessness, list making, and achievement-based love was confession and then choosing to believe God.

Once I chose to believe what God says in His Word, He then did the work of sanctifying me through and through.

I have made a reference of scriptures identifying who I am as a new creation in Christ. I try to read them every day to ingrain into my heart so I have a new go-to thought for when Satan tries to tempt me to think the old thoughts.

When it creeps up on me I have a little statement I say-

God is God and the list is not!

By God’s power I overcame this! Now I find that when I fall, my reaction time to recognizing the drifting away from having God on the throne is much quicker. It’s so much easier to turn around and change directions now that I have confessed, repented and asked God to change my heart and mind.

I still love an organized spreadsheet or an organized list, that’s how God created me and I have learned to love it! However, it no longer has power over me. Christ broke the power of sin and shame and gave me the Holy Spirit to empower me to resist the devil!

Romans 6:14~  For sin will not rule over you, because you are not under law but under grace.

Are you idolizing something over God? Are you struggling to believe what God says about you? Seek God’s face, search Him out in His Word, it was written for you. It has every answer you need for your life today!

For the next few weeks, guests will be writing each Monday on something (or someone) we tend to trust in besides God. 

What about you? How do you fill in the blank: In ______ I Trust?

This post will also be shared on: #TestimonyTuesday, #RaRaLinkup, #Intentionally Pursuing, #WomenWithIntention, #TellHiStory, #Thought-Provoking Thursday, #DanceWithJesus, #LLMLinkup, Faith-Filled Friday, Sitting Among Friends, and #SoulSurvivalLinkup.

25 thoughts on “In Lists We Trust

  1. Pingback: Word of the Week: Complete – FIRSTandSECONDblog

  2. Pingback: The Dark Side of Your LIST | Ginger's Corner

  3. I can sure identify with making lists! I finally learned that it wasn’t so bad if I didn’t finish everything on the list, I could just push it forward to the next day. That way I didn’t have to feel like a failure if I didn’t get it all done. I’m so glad our identity is in Christ. There is nothing we can do to earn His love or lose it. He is faithful and will always love and forgive us. Thanks for sharing this at #LMMLinkup!


  4. Dana, I can so identify with this! I actually burned myself out with the whole perfectionist, gotta get everything done mentality. It’s amazing how going from 2 kids to 5 changed that really fast for me! By number 4, I knew I was so incapable of handling all the “to dos”. I am so grateful Jesus saved me from myself! Linking up with you at #TellHisStory

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I’ve been struggling a lot with feelings of failure lately because I don’t feel like I’m accomplishing much, not going anywhere. But I need to remember, He doesn’t measure me by where I’m going, but by Who I’m going with!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amen to that, Faith! I have periods of feeling the same way. Our culture and sin-hearts are so wrapped up in doing, achieving, and moving forward that it’s hard to see our worth just in being His. But He is who determines our real worth- and it’s not based on us, but on Christ. You are worthy, loved, and delightful to God because you are His.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. tara8910

    I use to be a big list maker and got away from it because my husband would tease me about it when we first got married. I have found I am not nearly as productive without it, so i am trying to get back to it with a healthy balance. Now I pray to God before I make my lists!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’m also a member of the list-maker group. Making a list seems to help my controlling nature. This idea that I have control has caused so much stress over my life when things don’t go how I want. Definitely an idol in my life. God has been reminding me how I have no control over the last few years.
    I enjoyed your message!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Ifeoma Samuel

    Hello Dana, this is amazing…yes the list could become an idol instead of God…
    Thank you for this peaceful reminder.
    It is nice meeting you and reading your words.
    Thanks Bethany the series has been interesting thus far.
    Blessings to you both.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Hi there, Bethany! I hope you’re having a great summer. What a good idea for a series. You always have such good ones. 🙂

    Dana, what a delight to meet you hear and read your post. You are far more organized than I am. 🙂 I make an occasional list and lose it! But my worth is based in Christ, just like yours. Thanks for sharing your words, which I know will encourage many women. I’ll pin your post today. Ginger Harrington wrote a very helpful post on lists last week: “The Dark Side of Your List.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Betsy! I’m really grateful the Lord has been leading me to more series and to finding ways to create conversation on the topics through guest posting. Learning so much! 🙂

      Isn’t Dana great? Thanks for encouraging, Betsy! I’ll go check out Ginger’s link!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I too had a list problem and if I wasn’t unable to complete everything I would loathe. I am now still making my list, but I give them over to God in my morning pray. I say, God, these are the things I am looking to complete today. However not my will but your will be done.” This has helped me become okay with unscheduled interruptions and not completing everything listed. It reminds me God is in control, not my list 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  11. This is all so true! We take something that can be good and elevate it to god status in our minds. For me it was housekeeping. I kept my house so neat and clean that no one liked coming over. It was all too nice to feel lived in. My husband felt like he couldn’t kick off his boots and enjoy being home. While I really like it that clean, I had to decide a messier house made a better home for my family and showed more love and sacrifice than my constant cleaning did. Housekeeping is good, but not God.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wow! Kudos for being willing to let the mess be to an extent. I love cleanliness too and I know how hard it can be to sacrifice my ideal of cleanliness for others’ comfort. Blessings!


    2. danahoebeke

      Totally agree Jennifer! My question to myself was “When my children are grown what will they remember? That we always had a neat house or will they remember the home, love and memories we made?”


  12. This is a great post! My Pastor asked me one day could we be too organized? He was kidding with me because I can organize and list something to death. He was kidding but I got the message:) We are complete in Christ and nothing else will satisfy that in us! First time visiting your site. I am glad I stopped by. Your neighbor @ souls Survivor Link Up!

    Liked by 2 people

  13. blog8628

    Great post! Our accomplishments are such sneaky little devils worming their way into our ego and inflating our pride. I love that you finished with a note that you still make lists and spreadsheets (my fave), but not they have no power over you! Blessings, liz

    Liked by 2 people

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