Critical Conversation.

If, for a day, we wrote down each phrase of our inner dialogue - every stream of words we speak to ourselves from morning till sleep - what would we discover?

The conversation does not cease. We speak to ourselves from our waking, through our going and coming, until our heads rest again on our pillows. In a moment spent gazing in the mirror, we might scowl and turn away in frustration: "I'm too big / too plain / too ugly / too stalky / too lanky."  We might examine our current station in life - our resources, income, successes, failures, our reputation - and berate the weaknesses we discover: "I'm not accomplishing anything with my life / I'm not going anywhere / I'm stuck in a rut / I never finish what I start / I'm not significant."  After a particularly frustrating blunder, or a moment of poor judgment, we might clench our fists and become our own abuser: "I'm so stupid! / I won't ever be free / It's not worth trying / what's the point?" We act, too, as our own critic, tearing down the very dreams we cherish: "I'll never be able to do this / it won't amount to anything / I'm not talented enough / I'm alone."

We witness the success of a friend, a loved one, and even as we congratulate them, our celebration thinly veils the inner voice of comparison: "I have to be noticed too / I wish this were me / how can I prove myself? / they're better, more talented, than me."

We speak to ourselves, and all of heaven listens.

The Father listens because our inner voice is a stream of statements to Him, exposing which beliefs shape us and control us, telling Him how much (or little) we value His voice, His dialogue, His Word. 

Our thoughts run on loop, repeating and reinforcing the beliefs we hold most dear - the beliefs that control our lives. Our thoughts reveal our beliefs, but they also influence our beliefs. What we believe can change - in turn transforming our very lives - if we choose to change our inner conversation.

We cannot pretend we believe God's words to us, while still harboring and nurturing anxious, self-condemning thoughts. We cannot live in the gladness of courageous surrender, if we continue to speak to ourselves with insecure, skeptical, fear-soaked statements. If we yearn to live in the freedom and fulness of whole-hearted surrender to Jesus, we must choose to fill our mind with His words.

So let's ask ourselves again: if we could write out our inner dialogue, what would we discover?

Are we cradling unbelief? Are we mumbling the catchphrases of fear and hesitation? Are we passing judgment on ourselves, counting ourselves out? Are we comparing ourselves to others and retreating into dissatisfaction? Are we telling ourselves to be wary - that radical trust in God is too scary, too risky, too impractical?

The essential question is this: which are we speaking to ourselves: lies or Truth?

When we regurgitate lies - statements of unbelief, fear, insecurity - they begin to shape us in their image, blinding us to the reality of who God is for us, and who we are in Christ. But if we call attention to the ruse of the enemy, if we stand up in the strength of the Living God and refuse to mindlessly repeat his joy-draining deceptions, replacing them instead with the life-saturated words of the Father, then something entirely new happens within us. Courage floods us. Our discernment grows sharp, our vision clear. Our hearts expand, revived and enriched with the Love of the Father.

The conversation changes.
Our beliefs change.
Our lives change.

When the Voice within us speaks the Word of God, we discover for ourselves that all things - realistically all things - are possible through Christ who strengthens us.

This is the power of our inner conversation.

This is the power of the Word of God.











You are not disqualified.

We disqualify ourselves too often.


Life, for us, will only ever be normal, average, typical. We devour books and films and series saturated with lives of valor, significance, and world-altering Love; but the movie ends, the book is completed, our longing remains unfulfilled, and we assume we are only meant to watch it, to read it, not to live it for ourselves.

The sideways glance of comparison deflates us, siphoning our attention into a closed-loop of insecurity, numb entertainment, and fear-laced unbelief.

Others are doing better, bigger, more polished things.

Others have it “figured out.”

Their “yes” matters.

Our moments of surrender and faith look pale and shabby juxtaposed with the Mother Teresas of the world.

We look down at the resources in our hands and deem them embarrassingly wanting.

I’m just a community college freshman.

 I’m only a barista.

 I work at a grocery store.

 I’m a nanny.

 I’m a stay-at-home mom.

 I spend eight hours of my day in an office.

 I don’t have any particular talent.


Not me. 

I’m ordinary.

Our “yes” to Jesus – whispered in the midst of the mundane – feels empty, unusable.

And we’re left to wrestle with an essential incongruence: the stirring hunger – gut-deep – to do extraordinarily meaningful things in this life, and – yet – our refusal to believe we actually can.

One is true, real.

The other is a lie.

Our lives – and the lives of each person we encounter – hinge on recognizing which is which. 

So let’s get specific. Let’s focus in on you.

Are you rationalizing your disqualification?

For a moment, center your attention on the man Jesus, His eyes fixed on you – saturated with mercy, tenderness, and ferocious Love.

The Son of God – murdered for your every selfishness, rebellion, and sin, and alive again for your blameless rebirth – is telling you that your own disqualifying estimation of yourself is inaccurate.

If you’ve disqualified yourself, if you’ve hesitated and withdrawn your “yes” because you assumed it wasn’t worth much, you’re wrong.

Your unique existence – lived in every nook and cranny of the “mundane” – matters in an explosive way, beyond your most ecstatic expectations and hopes.

Your “yes” can change the course of eternity for a person, a family, a nation.

 This is not a motivational speech. This is reality.

Paul expresses it marvelously in Ephesians 2:4-10:

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

In the midst of failure, rebellion, and deadly disconnection from God, He resuscitated you, carved every ounce of death and sin-identity out of you, and triumphantly lifted you to heaven, where you are seated with Christ. And He has chosen to make His immeasurable riches of grace and kindness in Jesus known through you. For ages to come.

Through you.

Linger on that thought.

And all of this is His gift! His faithfulness fully backs the gift and ensures its permanent significance!

Beyond even this, the Father emphasizes that He formed you specifically and carefully – prior to the genesis of time and reality – for good works, so you can walk in them.

How then can you sit, arguing that you aren’t qualified? Equipped? Called?

Dear friend, you are pivotal, vital, significant beyond anything you’ve imagined.

Through you the immeasurable, world-altering riches of the Father’s grace and kindness will be made known. For ages to come.

Your yes is desperately needed.

You are needed.

Your ordinary life is extraordinarily equipped with the saving Grace of God Himself.


You are seated in heavenly places.

Nothing could be more significant.


Your every yes - every single one - is inestimably valuable to Him. Whether your yes arises from the floor of your bedroom as you complete your studies, or as you trek to an unreached village in the Himalayas, the eternal value of each yes is the same. 


Your surrender is pivotal.


Will you choose to believe it, to live with the conviction of your significance in the eternal mission of Christ?

The posture of surrender to the Father, Love for Him, and a yes-soaked belief in what He says of you will alter the course of history – igniting transformation, infusing hope wherever you wander, and liberating others who come near to you.

And that posture can happen anywhere.

No life is too small.

No set of circumstances is confining.

You are not disqualified.

You are essential.

And you aren’t made to watch it.

You’re made to live it.