Truth. When Jesus said the truth will set you free I’ve always thought that was in the context of the Gospel message; about hearing the Good News about Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection and the accompanying salvation. I believe now that He intended a much bigger meaning. Absolutely that is what He meant but like so many things God speaks in His Word, whether Jesus’ own words or Paul’s or Peter’s or James’, there seems to be the “immediate” meaning but as you grow in relationship with Him, He shows you something deeper, broader and more wonderful in its fullness.
Truth. Freedom comes when the truth is known, when the truth is spoken. When the truth is lived – radically, unapologetically, transparently lived. Addicts are perfected liars.
First, at some point we heard a lie about ourselves, or a situation or another person and it seemed plausible so we believed it; most often this is something in our childhood and family of origin. It could be a trauma or family situation we were too young to really comprehend and our child’s mind misinterpreted it – it could be any number of things – but it was not true and therefore a lie. And we believed it.
Believing it, we took that first lie into our heart and internalized it, making it our own, letting it become the lens through which we viewed the world around us but mostly how we view ourselves. And it hurts. It cuts deeply. We may not even know what the original pain was or the lie that grew from it.
So we protect ourselves and we begin to medicate our pain. We perpetuate the lies we’ve told ourselves. We’re ashamed of our medication of choice so we lie to hide the fact that we are medicating. We withdraw emotionally, internally, sometimes even physically and we act out more and lie more and act out even more and lie even more. The lies and the addiction have become a life-style. Now we lie even when we don’t have to. It’s second nature to us. It’s become our primary language. “The truth is not in us.”
And, then . . .
We’re found out. Or those very rare few of you who are truly courageous tell someone. In my case, I wasn’t brave at all and was found out. I was thrust into Truth. It was all out there … well … enough of it was out to push the rock over the ledge so that it rolled down the mountain and picked up speed. I was found out but I was a Liar. It was my nature now; for roughly 50 years I lied and hid. The truth was a foreign language to me. But there was no hiding now. Reality and Truth were forced upon me.
I was in personal counseling. I was in a 7 Pillars of Freedom Group. And Lynn, dear, beautiful, amazing Lynn, looked me in the eye and cried, “Baloney” at each attempt to deny, to minimize, to shade the truth, to not come fully clean. It hurt us both deeply as a horrific 18 months passed with memory after memory surfacing until .I was finally free. The last buried memory spewed forth. And I was finally, FREE. The process taught me to trust. Trust God. Trust Lynn. And yes, even to trust myself. Two of us had always been trustworthy (Lynn and God) but I believed the lie that they weren’t.
Now when I hear someone blow through that passage of Scripture like it’s trite and tired I cringe and tears well up. As it is with a God so deep we can’t begin to comprehend Him, there is more to it than just the words. It’s the Heart of the matter. It’s living in Truth and Reality and it really does set us Free. We are Created To Be Free. He Promised.