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Truth or…

There was a game show on TV when I was young named “Truth or Consequences”. The premise of the show was that contestants had to answer a question (usually trivia that no one would really know) or face the consequence, which was some embarrassing and entertaining stunt. Many episodes had people reunited with friends or family they had not seen in years.

 

I got to thinking about this show when I saw a quote the other day.

Between Ears

How much of what goes on in our brains is ramblings about ourselves and others that are not grounded in truth?

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.        
                                                                   2 Corinthians 10:5

 

Scripture tells us to take EVERY thought captive to make it obedient to Christ. This verse can certainly be applied to our sinfulness and thoughts that are not pleasing to God. We can also take it a step further and realize that our thoughts should always be based in truth.

 

For example, while getting dressed in the morning I often take a look in the full-length mirror and immediately see things about my body that I don’t like. There is nothing wrong with the observation, it’s what I do with it that makes a difference in the rest of my day, and what I do about what I don’t like.

 

If I force myself to concentrate on the truth about my body I will remember that Psalm 139 tells me that I am fearfully and wonderfully made and that God’s works are wonderful. (v. 14) Therefore the truth is that while my body isn’t all that God (or I) desire it to be it is healthy and created by a wonderful God. I have the use of all 5 senses and the ability to fully use my arms and legs. There is also truth for me that I have not been obedient in keeping my body healthy and I have a responsibility to change that. BUT that does not make me any less valuable to God or in society.

 

Another area where I struggle with keeping the truth in my brain is when I don’t think I meet up to expectations. I begin to talk down to myself because I didn’t complete a task well enough or I perceive I have let someone down. This is an area that can bring on a downward spiral so quickly and the enemy looks forward to it.

 

It is important to recognize the truth in a situation like this and consider how my emotions are perhaps a part of the situation. Some questions I am learning to ask myself are:

1. Did I set my expectations of myself too high?
Most of the time I expect perfection of myself, or set my goals at a level that is realistic for someone else but not necessarily for me. If the truth is that the expectations were realistic I need to examine what I should have done differently, face up to any consequences and forgive myself, moving forward instead of staying stuck in beating myself up.

2. Did I truly let someone down or were there perceptions of my performance different from my own?
It can be so easy to think you know what someone expects from you without knowing the truth. I find that many times someone else is pleased with the job I did when I can only see how I could have done it better. Knowing the truth of expectations and perceptions can keep relationships healthy and our thoughts in check.

3. What does scripture say about this situation?
Whatever we do and think should always come back to the truth of scripture. If we aren’t sure of God’s expectations we should search scripture to find the truth. Sometimes a trusted friend or adviser can give us insight we can’t find for ourselves.

 

If I had to choose one scripture as the key to keeping the space between our ears healthy it would be this one:

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy
—think about such things.
Philippians 4:8

My heart’s desire is to not only hide this scripture in my heart but to learn it well enough that it is on the tip of my tongue and forefront in my mind as the enemy tries to lie to me and get inside my head.

I’m praying for you today that the truth would be in your mind and heart and that God’s truth would set you free today!

 

Blessings & Peace to you!
Paula

 

 

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Truth ~ Words Worth Remembering Week #9

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
                                                                                           John 8:32

Truth.

It can be defined:

  • sincerity in action, character, and utterance
  • the state of being the case : fact (2) : the body of real things, events, and facts
  • a judgment, proposition, or idea that is true or accepted as true <truths of thermodynamics>

And it can be debated.

In this passage Jesus says we will know the truth and it will set us free. So what is He talking about?

How do we know the truth?

Jesus was with His disciples and other Jewish leaders (who wanted to kill Him) as He was speaking. Just before the above statement Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.” (vs. 31) But the Jewish leaders debated Jesus’ statement saying they had never been slaves to anyone. This is a sentiment we might share.

So how can we be set “free” if we have never been slaves?

Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (v 34-36)

As followers of Christ our truth comes from God’s Word and is interpreted for us by His Holy Spirit. The Spirit convicts us of sin and compels us to confess and be forgiven. The more we know God’s Word the better we are able to listen and follow the truth.

truth next exit

The challenge comes when we choose to create our own truth because we don’t like what God’s Word tells us or we ‘adjust’ His truth to make it easier for us to accept and follow, perhaps to make it easier to get along with others who don’t believe God Word is the truth.

But watered down truth is no truth at all.

The consequences of watering down the truth are a less intimate walk with God and a slippery slope towards believing the lies of the evil one. It can happen slowly so that we don’t even realize what is happening. That’s part of the plan.

If you are a follower of Christ I encourage you to take some time today to consider whether you are consistently following the truth of the Bible or are watering it down so that you ‘fit in’ with those around you. It is difficult to be challenged and chastised by those who don’t think as you do. Jesus was killed for following God’s truth. But He did it so that we could be set free.

I’m so thankful for God’s truth. Even when it’s difficult!

blessings and peace to you today!
Paula