Friday, April 15, 2011

Truth: The Nastiest Tasting Yet Most Critical Pill

Years ago my oldest son, Chandler was a young boy and he would not share a toy with his younger brother, Austin. Their grandfather, lovingly known as Pap-pap, happened to be in the room with my boys when the arguing erupted. After a few minutes of disputing about whom should get the toy, Pap-pap looked at Chandler and calmly (and somewhat sarcastically) asked, “What would Jesus do?” Chandler immediately bellowed as if in agony, “Ohhh, Pap-pap, why did you have to say that?!” and reluctantly handed Austin the toy. We still laugh about that moment to this day. You see, Chandler knew what truth was but he was choosing to ignore it for selfish reasons.
Truth surrounds us daily and yet we choose to ignore its weight and significance. For example, everyone knows these simple truths; smoking kills, alcohol poisons the brain, obesity shortens and reduces the quality of one’s life, helmets save lives, speeding is acceptable if you’re late for work…no wait, sorry, speeding is illegal because speed kills. This list could go on and on. Truth is ever present but we do not give it the time of day when it interferes with our own selfish desires and personal progress verses God’s intended path. It’s not that we don’t know, it’s that we don’t care in the moment and we choose the truth we desire to follow! But is that truth or just something that ‘feels right’?
The book of Ezekiel tells us what we are when we hear truth but ignore her anyway; we are a rebellious people (12:2). Jesus often referred back to this verse when He said “He who has ears let him hear”. The implication is obvious, we (believers) have the ability to understand but we most often choose to rebel unless it favors us. The natural state of man is to be an insurgent who fights against truth.
Charles Malik quipped correctly “The problem is not only to win souls but to save minds. If you win the whole world and lose the mind of the world, you will soon discover you have not won the world”. The Bible is clear that Christianity is about a renewing of the mind with truth as truth is not a ‘felt’ thing. People often hear, believe, and act on what they desire based on their hearts and their feelings despite scripture’s warning that our own hearts deceive us. Truth is only found in the written Word of God. God’s truth is terrifying and obliterates a person’s self-esteem and self-reliance. The Bible, like the military, tears one down to the minimum so God can re-build from the ground up stronger and better than before. Henry Rollins (not someone I endorse) stated, “Scar tissue is stronger than regular tissue, realize the strength, move on”.
The good news of the Bible is that Jesus has accomplished that which I cannot. He has conquered sin and death. I can do nothing but He has done everything. Truth is ever present if we would choose to assimilate its damming yet comforting principles. The question today is do we want the truth pill or do we desire our daily dose of hallucinogenic medication?
Infants are ignorant of truth; Kids are shielded from truth; Teenagers challenge truth; Adults ignore truth; Break the Mold!