Labels were plastered all over me, their edges overlapping to create one large cocoon-like prison.

If I moved my left hand to write, the labels of Procrastinator and Perfectionist would protest.

If I tried to listen for God’s voice, Unworthy and Unimportant would block my ears.

If I opened my mouth to speak, the glue of Ashamed and Afraid-of-Man stung my lips into silence.

There I stood. Powerless. Hopeless. Left alone with only my thoughts to keep me company.

It seemed there were too many layers of problems to be dealt with. Each label was connected with another… and another… and another. Even if I had the ability to begin the painful process of peeling them off, what was the point? For while the superficial labels may have been absolute lies, perhaps the ones underneath were not only closer to the skin, but also closer to the truth. Did I really want those things to be revealed for all the world to see?

What would God say if He saw them?

Suddenly it all became clear in my mind.

He can already see them! He is willing and able to deal with them if I am truly repentant… and He knows that I am.

I sensed something like fire spark inside me. It grew hotter and hotter until I began to feel the glue melting. I could hear His voice again, reminding me Who He was and who I really was in Him. Then I found that I could not remain silent anymore; I declared aloud that only God defines me and has the final say, not the Enemy. All of the false accusations fell into a limp pile on the floor.

Some labels remained, embedded deep into my nature. But, I trusted – and still trust – that the Consuming Fire will one day complete His work.

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