Living in Truth
Truth, in this day and age, is very hard to find. Nowadays anyone can get on social media, make a post, and if they are witty and well-worded, what they write is often taken as factual. Basically, we no longer listen to those with degrees and scholars who have spent years researching a subject. Instead, we follow what sounds exciting, innovative and we especially like those who can elicit a range of emotion from our hearts.
2 Timothy 4:3-4 warns us of times such as this; a tickling of the ear. We like what someone has to say and want it to be true, so we sign up for their diet program, register for their online self-esteem class, buy the book, purchase the outfit or hair treatment or supplements… the list goes on and on.
And I am not immune to this temptation. One day one of my co-workers walks by my office with an energy drink and I immediately stop him and ask him all about it. He talks about how it has helped him stay on task especially in busy work seasons. I take down the name and decide I’ll try it out. Later that day another co-worker walks by with a different type of energy drink. Again, I immediately stop him and ask him about all the details. He, in a similar fashion, tells me all the ways it has helped keep him energized, lowered his appetite, and given him motivation to work out on busy days. I again take down the name and decide this weekend I will try them both, on separate days of course, and see which one of these miracle elixirs will work for me.
Saturday comes and first thing I do is head down to the store and look for the drinks. I get home, put my work out clothes on, slap on some music, slide on my sneakers, and put the two drinks before me. I decide I will try the one with the bright colors and cool looking logo. I pop the cap off and take a long, cool gulp of the not-so-great-tasting energy drink. Feeling nothing, I begin vacuuming. But within minutes, I feel a weird tingling sensation on the soles of my feet, which travels to the palms of my hands and eventually my whole body is tingling, including the tips of my ears (no joke). Then I start getting hot, and all of a sudden, I feel a jolt of adrenaline which makes me feel as if I could either join the MMA or jump off the top of my roof. Terrified, I begin reading the label on the can which states some people may experience tingling sensations which should subside within ten minutes.
But this is not tingling; my whole body is on fire, and I begin to panic. I am now contemplating if I am having an allergic reaction and if, perhaps, I should call 911. I consider the next morning’s newspaper headline: “Middle-Age Hispanic Woman Found Dead on Kitchen Floor Due to Rare Allergic Reaction to Very Common Energy Drink.” As I am contemplating my death, the wave of adrenaline begins to subside, and I regain some composure. Just then my nephew walks in and begins to laugh hysterically as I retell my near-death experience. He works out a lot and assures me that what I experienced was normal for some highly sensitive types such as myself. What I learned from that experience was…do your own research, know your own body, and understand that what works for some does not work for all. In this instance the truth was I should have known better but because I wanted this drink to work for me just as it had for my co-workers, I went against my better judgement. Simply put, truth matters and there are consequences when the truth is pushed aside.
So, let me ask you, when you wake up every morning, where do you seek truth? Is God your first refuge or is it the tv, social media, or maybe you immediately get to work because you have a busy schedule and not a moment to spare? And as you go about your busy day, what are you communicating to the people around you? If God is not priority, then what is? As believers in Christ, we must be grounded in truth and firm in our identity. As we each live out our calling we will face fatigue, criticism, people who disrupt more than support, tragedy, fear, looming sickness, divorce, or mental illness. We are absolutely living in unprecedented times and without God as our anchor the enemy will try to make us discouraged, isolated, weak, and overcome by the woes of this world. But God has given us a weapon… it is the truth of His Word.
John 8:32, “You will know the truth and the truth will set you free.”
Here are just a few things that digesting the word of God will result in:
Peace of Mind (John 14:27)
Victory (1 Corinthians 15:57)
Strength (Philippians 4:13)
Joy (John 15:11)
Wholeness (Colossians 2:10)
Freedom (Romans 8:1-2)
Intimate time spent in God’s Word will fill our cups to overflowing, it will transform the heart of our service, it will crush our pride, and strengthen us to face the challenges of the day. In the pages of Scripture we receive a deep gulp of the gospel truth and it is refreshing, equipping, and restoring. It is the cross of Christ that transforms the landscape of our lives and it is only intentional time with God that will bring us to the truth of our purpose and the image we were created to reflect throughout our day.