The Truth About Being Capable | Deuteronomy Series


I have a handful of faulty core beliefs - we all do. These beliefs are ones that are not actually true of us but have been embedded in us from various life experiences. One of mine is that I'm not good or capable enough to handle something/take on a task/etc, so I should run from it or not even try. I would even say that many moments in my life have been marked by "I can't".
I can't tie my shoes.
I can't write in cursive
(had a big meltdown about that in second grade).
I can't do this research assignment.
I can't mentor college students well enough.
I can't share the Gospel. 

The list goes on and on. I don't necessarily feel this with every situation, but it comes up a lot and I have to actively work through why that's not true. I have to remind myself of promises in Scripture and experiences where I know I have been capable of doing something.

Because this is a very present struggle in my life, when I was reading through the end of chapter 29, these words stuck out to me:

The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.
— Deuteronomy 29:29

What assurance this offers! In a book that is greatly about obedience and loving the Lord with everything I have, and being so careful to keep His commands, it can be easy to let those same words creep up again: I can't do that. The truth is that I can't do this perfectly but I can do it because God has given me everything I need to do so. Certain things about God haven't been revealed to us - I think a major reason for that is probably because our brains couldn't even handle or comprehend it. But the things that have been revealed aid us in following Him wholeheartedly. And the secret things cause us to have to trust and obey. This verse in chapter 29 reminded me of 2 Peter 1:3-4:


"His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence..."


I definitely recommend reading the rest of this chapter in 2 Peter because it goes on to talk about how we carry this out and also emphasizes the importance of remembering what Jesus has done for us and how that is a driving factor behind our obedience and other God-honoring qualities.

This leads into Deuteronomy 30, which is another summing up of obedience being from a place of love and the Lord giving blessings out of that according to the promises and purposes He originally intended. Obedience, blessing, and God's character are so beautifully woven together in this chapter, and it even shows that obedience is best done through the act of remembrance. Moses tells them to "call these things to mind" (verse 1). After this beginning section, Moses makes this statement in verse 11:

For this commandment that I command you today is not too hard for you, neither is it far off. It is not in heaven that you should say ‘Who will ascend heaven for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?’ Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say ‘Who will go over the sea for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?’ But the word is very near you. It is in your mouth and in your heart, so that you can do it.
— Deuteronomy 30:11-14

You guys. These commands of movement towards life are doable and realistic. The Lord has made His Word and His commands accessible for us and has not made it hard for us. It's not some sort of mystery or unattainable thing that we need to figure out and hope we get right. It doesn't take reaching a certain level of holiness. The word is near. We have everything we need pertaining to life and godliness through God's word. But also, the Word is near. The Word Himself - the Word who became flesh and dwelt among us, as described in John 1. Praise the Lord that He is with us and as we walk with Him, we love Him more, and we obey His commands as a result of that. How freeing is that?!

He simply wants my heart (Psalm 51:15-17), and if I love Him with all my heart - every part of me and every area of my life wholly surrendered to Him - I will obey His commands.

Moses goes on to communicate in vs. 15-20 that there's a big choice to make and there's a lot on the line. Obeying God's voice leads to life & blessing, and disobedience leads to perishing. They are told again to hold fast to Him, for He is their very life. We are told the same thing in Colossians 3:4, which talks about putting on the "new self" - our new identity in Christ - and seeking the things that are above, aka: our obedience. Full circle, right?

Let these truths encourage you today. This life isn't easy, but the Lord your God has given you everything you need. Although other things may shift and change, His presence is always promised. Store His Word up in your heart, meditate on how He sees you, fall more in love with Him, and the result will be obedience and continuing to walk in His Will. He makes you capable and sufficient.


"I have stored up Your Word in my heart, that I might not sin against you." - Psalm 119:11




If you'd like some help in identifying your own faulty core beliefs, check out this article on Working Through Pain.

Jocelyn Hepler