If you are filling your mind with negative self-talk, you need good teammates who can counter what your mind is telling you. They can help correct the false narratives in your mind. With encouraging words, they can replace corrosive doubt with bold faith.
I recall a time when several people started criticizing me with the same negative message. What they had to say was painful to hear. I have always tried to be a good leader who is willing to listen to criticism. But trying to discern the difference between what is true or false can sometimes be challenging.
I have also believed that if someone calls you a donkey, you shouldn’t pay close attention to the opinion. If two people call you a donkey, you should pay more attention to their criticism. But if three people call you a donkey, you may need to buy a saddle.
Three people had called me a donkey. I was ready to buy a saddle…until several of my closest life teammates took me aside and spoke truth to me.
First, they pointed out that these people had never much liked my ministry. In fact, they didn’t much like each other. My friends showed me how critics often seek each other out when they have a unified rallying cry – even when they don’t like each other.
I was their common bull’s-eye.
Next, my friends wouldn’t allow me to believe my accuser’s exaggerated lies. They reminded me that my critics didn’t really know me. They hadn’t spent any time with me. How could they know or judge me?
But my life teammates knew me. They had spent years doing life with me and my family. We had spent countless hours together – both in good times and bad. They told me of how I had influenced their lives for the Lord. They shared with me my positive character qualities. They also reminded me that they wouldn’t hesitate to bring concerns to me.
My friends refuted my critics’ lies with the truth. And my heart was set free.
As COVID-19 persists, we are all experiencing anxiety to some degree. We need to counter negative self-talk by surrounding ourselves with good teammates. With friends who encourage us and build us up (1 Thessalonians 5:11).
Find your teammates and walk through life with them. When you do, your anxiety will flee.