The Snare of Introspection
Avoiding a Subtle, Yet Serious, "Snare of the Fowler"
This teaching on the snare of introspection is a practical application that companions the lessons set forth in "Matters of the Heart," our free eCourse for spiritual growth and emotional transformation. The 24 Main Healing Lessons from the course can be found in the downloads section in PDF and MP3 formats. They are also available in our Store as an ebook, a 176 page workbook and as CD and DVD sets of 24, 1/2 hour teachings.
The Snare of the Fowler
Our soul has escaped as a bird from the snare of the fowlers; The snare is broken, and we have escaped. Our help is in the name of the LORD. Psalm 124:7-8
Even this equipping can be used against you. The teachings on the strongholds, discernment, and carrying thoughts captive to Christ are indeed helpful, but these good things can be subtly used against us by the enemy—if we begin to lean on our own understanding, thinking that it is up to us to deliver ourselves. The truth is that we will indeed be able to recognize and defeat the enemy’s attacks in many areas at many times thanks to the equipping we receive. However, there will always be some attacks of the enemy that slip in under our radar, for which we do not yet have sufficient discernment and therefore really can’t recognize what is getting a strong hold upon us.
Beware of this snare! If we have not learned this, then we may slip into the snare of introspection—trying to be our own light of revelation and conviction of sin on the inside of ourselves. We begin looking inside trying to find the place that is keeping us bound, the thing that is wrong. This is like going in to a dark, junked-up basement, looking for a lost coin with a dimly burning flashlight. The harder you try to find “the sin” you need to confess and deal with, the more freedom seems to slip away. Then discouragement and self-condemnation begin to come in. Why can’t I get free? Why isn’t God helping me? This is the snare of introspection coming in on top of whatever it was that was making you feel bound in the first place.
Jesus is the Light of the world (John 9:5). We need to learn to recognize that once we see we are snared in a way that we cannot escape, we have to look to Him to rescue us. Only the Lord can turn the lights on so that we can see clearly what we need to confess and repent of (Jeremiah 17:10). Once we see it, we will know what to do with it to co-operate with Him, but until the Lord shows us we are held captive by darkness.
If we don’t wait for His light, we will find ourselves hacking away at chains we cannot see to little avail, or worse, adding new chains of self reproach, confusion and increasing bitterness and fear. Our own understanding is good for a lot of things—we are told to get as much understanding as we can, but we are warned not to lean on our understanding (Proverbs 3:5-6). When we don’t see the way, we are to lean hard on Jesus, acknowledging Him as our light and our deliverer, and letting Him direct our path.
You Can't Save Yourself
Jesus alone is our Savior. He delights in rescuing us. He always has a good plan to give us a future and a hope in the midst of the struggle (Jeremiah 29:11). He says, “Look to Me and be saved” (Isaiah 45:22). Just by remembering to look to Him and call upon Him to deliver us the heaviness of the snare of introspection begins to lift. We begin to turn from self as savior to Him Who alone is Savior. With that settled, we can release the concern and go on our merry way, trusting Him to guide the process of deliverance by His Spirit—in His time.
Meanwhile, learning to turn from self and look to Him, deals with a much deeper issue all on its own. Why was it we were snared by introspection in the first place? Because inside our heart of hearts we “naturally” trusted to self more than to Jesus! This is one of the deepest issues of the fallen nature—trying to be as God (Genesis 3:5). So it is good to train our eyes to look to Jesus for our deliverance and wait for Him to come.
The snare of introspection, now that it is overturned, is being made to work for our advantage (Romans 8:28)! Looking to Him for deliverance will grow our spiritual eyes to behold Him in greater ways as our true Deliverer from all such snares and our love and appreciation for His salvation will greatly increase.
Rejoice! —He is making good progress with you!
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Take these truths into daily life--and keep your freedom.
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