The greatest miracle of God is when people admit the truth about themselves - forget about walking on water or feeding 5,000. When this miraculous thing happens it is nothing short of a miracle of God for all the pride and fear is, in an instant broken down, as they confess their inadequacies and commence repenting of (turning from) their broken ways.
Yet, how rarely this occurs is noteworthy. It almost never happens; so it is with God and angels rejoicing when one sinner repents (Luke 15) - they so rarely see it. The difficult bit is God doesn't give life without confession and repentance. It's simply the way life works. The frustrating thing is every human being has the capacity for it but 99.9 percent of the time we choose not to.
Paul Koptak says that more Christians claim to have dealt with their sins than in fact the number that actually do. The number of so-called mature Christians who've ‘been that way’ for twenty, thirty, forty, fifty years without changing - without God truly changing them - is startling. They've never truly experienced the light and Spirit of God if they couldn't go on with him. They remain uninspired and perhaps further from Christ than ever. It takes a true sense and commitment of courage to express and live faith.
Wasn't it Christ that said, "Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord, ’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'"?(Matthew 7:21-23) The central premise of the true Christian life is a turning back to God - it's not going our own way. Yet many selectively go their own way and veil it as ‘going God's. ’ This is not adhering to the truth.
The Power of True Repentance
Few have truly done it enough to have mastered it. Mastering it is about making it instinctive in what we do, so that God's truth always becomes an overriding commander of us - more than pride. So, it is awareness first and foremost, and then it is an unabashed, daring commitment to “hardship as a pathway to peace, " as is mentioned in the long version of the Serenity Prayer. The ‘hardship’ is a nose-hardened approach to repentance; taking the difficult, less-travelled, narrow road.
The Benefits of Acknowledging the Truth
The benefits of acknowledging the truth about yourself are at least four-fold:
For one you are open to God's gift of learning. You all of a sudden have a thirst to learn because you're unafraid of not knowing things.
Another one is balance. You stand to be gifted with the ability to tell the truth about yourself without needing to under inflate or over inflate yourself. You are being truthful because you're not scared of it in yourself anymore.
Another one is receptivity. Being true and grounded in yourself means you have room for growth, room to learn, and the power to receive and not simply give your own warped views and opinions that are based in lies - or more gently put white lies of untruth that everyone speaks yet we pretend not to hear; the lie that is.
You can be curious. And positive curiosity is all about extracting truthful opportunities from life; opportunities that are directly in favour of God's will as they never hurt anyone and only add sparkle to everyone's lives - except in the life of the envious onlooker who wishes failure on the daring. Goethe did say, “Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. " Canadian author and pastor Basil King said, “Be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid. " It is so true. True curiosity is about fearing nothing but God.
This is hard-hitting stuff. Check yourself. Everything you do and say: does it align with the truth? You will find that your life is probably infested with lies or untruths. And that's okay, because as soon as you're aware of it, you can begin to start dealing with it. I say begin, because the patterns and the strength of the bad habits (the living pattern of the lie) will be difficult to break initially. It's then about undoing the tension, and unravelling the twisted mess, slowly but surely. I find the following Shamanic quotation tremendously encouraging: “We hardly ever realize that we can cut anything out of our lives, anytime, in the blink of any eye. "
Not one of us is immune to living lies in life; not one - except of course, the Saviour. His sweet irony is, he helps us spiritually. Don't reject his offer. It is the key to real happiness.
Copyright © 2008, Steven John Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.
Steve Wickham is a safety and health professional (BSc) and a qualified lay Christian minister (GradDipDiv). His passion in vocation is facilitation and coaching; encouraging people to soar to a higher value of their potential. Steve's key passion is work/life balance and re-creating value for living, and an exploration of the person within us.