Any movement toward freedom and life, any movement toward God or others, will be opposed. Marriage, friendship, beauty, rest-the thief wants it all. So, it becomes the devil's business to keep the Christian's spirit imprisoned.He knows that the believing and justified Christian has been raised up out of the grave of his sins and trespasses. From that point on, Satan works that much harder to keep us bound and gagged, actually imprisoned in our own grave clothes. He knows that if we continue in this kind of bondage. . . we are not much better off than when we were spiritually dead.
Sadly, many of these accusations will actually be spoken by Christians. Having dismissed a warfare worldview, they do not know who is stirring them to say certain things. "Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census of Israel" (1 Chron. 21:1). The Enemy used David, who apparently wasn't watching for it, to do his evil. He tried to use Peter too. "From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things . . . Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 'Never, Lord!' he said. 'This shall never happen to you!' Jesus turned and said to Peter, 'Get behind me, Satan!'" (Matt. 16:21-23). Heads up-these words will come from anywhere. Be careful what or who you are agreeing with.
When we make those agreements with the demonic forces suggesting things to us, we come under their influence. It becomes a kind of permission we give the Enemy, sort of like a contract.
Some foul spirit whispers, I'm such a stupid idiot, and they agree with it; then they spend months and years trying to sort through feelings of insignificance. They'd end their agony if they'd treat it for the warfare it is, break the agreement they've made, and send the Enemy packing.This post is an excerpt from Waking the Dead by John Eldredge.BE HOLY.BE A MAN.
Jesus said, "Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘Whoever swears by the temple, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gold of the temple, he is obliged to perform it.’ Fools and blind! For which is greater, the gold or the temple that sanctifies the gold? And, ‘Whoever swears by the altar, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gift that is on it, he is obliged to perform it.’ Fools and blind! For which is greater, the gift or the altar that sanctifies the gift? Therefore he who swears by the altar, swears by it and by all things on it. He who swears by the temple, swears by it and by Him who dwells in it. And he who swears by heaven, swears by the throne of God and by Him who sits on it."
The Pharisees didn’t place a lot of emphasis on saying what they mean. Instead they had developed what one commentator called “evasive swearing”. They divided oaths into two categories. Those they had to keep and those they didn’t necessarily have to keep. The way they divided these oaths depended on whether or not God’s name was involved. If the name of God was used in the oath, then it had to be kept no matter what. However if you managed to give an oath without using God’s name, well then you didn’t necessarily have to keep that oath.
The result of evasive swearing was that if someone swore by God’s name then he would keep that oath without fail. But if they swore by anything else he felt perfectly okay with breaking the oath if he wanted to. As you can imagine this led to people’s word being basically meaningless unless they had sworn in God’s name that they would do something. The way they figured this was that if they had sworn by God’s name then they had made God a partner in their oath and so they were bound to keep it. If they didn’t keep it not only had they broken their word but they had also insulted God. On the other hand if they didn’t use God’s name they didn’t break their word when they changed their minds and God really didn’t care since His name hadn’t been invoked in the oath.
This is the attitude that Jesus is taking to task in this passage. He tells them that they are only pretending to be people of integrity. They want to give the appearance of being truthful and honest people without all the hassle of having to actually be truthful and honest people. One great truth they failed to recognize is that our lives cannot be divided into the secular and the sacred. There is just our life and there is no part of our life that God is not a part of. There is not one standard of truthfulness at church, one with our friends and another at work. There is just one standard and its God’s standard. God’s standard is honesty.
It’s easy for us to look down on the religious leaders for their use of evasive swearing, but if we were to be honest we have our own methods of evasive swearing. Instead of swearing by the temple, we say things like…
“I’ll think about it.”
“I might do that.”
“Let me check to see if I can.”
Or if we really want to sound pious we will say, “I’ll pray about that.”
Of course there are plenty of times when these are genuine answers and that is fine. In fact, the Bible tells us it’s wise not to be rash in giving our word. But there are just as many times when these are safe, non-committal answers that allow us time to think of good reasons why we can’t do whatever it is that has prompted this answer. It’s our own form of evasive swearing and our form of evasive swearing now is just as wrong as their form of evasive swearing was then.
In Psalm 101 David said, “I will lead a life of integrity in my own home.” What impact do you think it has on our kids when they see us use our own form of evasive swearing? What does it say to them when they see us give non-committal answers so that we can get out of something, or outright lie and then tell them, “Now, don’t you lie to me”? Or even worse, what does it say to them when we have them lie for us by saying something like, “Answer the phone and if it’s for me tell them I’m not here”? Integrity is not integrity unless it’s lived out at home. If we are going to be men and women of integrity we must be honest in our speech. We would all say that we value honesty, but do our actions and attitudes reflect this value?
God wants us to be honest in our speech. God wants us to keep our word. To be a man of integrity we must say what we mean and mean what we say.
This post was written by Rev Ross. For the original post, go to: http://stacyjross.wordpress.com/2013/07/30/say-what-you-mean-and-mean-what-you-say/
BE A MAN.
“You’re fat! You don’t know how to sing! What kind of Christian are you?! Nobody likes you! You're too old!” I heard this accusing voice in my head while I was getting ready for church that morning… Interspersed between these negative statements, I heard the song, “We serve a mighty God” by Jon Gibson playing in my head as well. As I was hearing these warring voices in my head, I felt my emotions going awry. I starting praying, asking God to give me relief. I haven’t felt like this for quite a while. I started to think, “why am I feeling this way? “ Some reasons came to my mind: I hadn’t slept much the night before, approximately five hours of fitful sleep, I had been so busy that I hadn’t had much time to spend with Karyn, I had not been practicing my music for praise team that Sunday even though I knew the songs, I had been so busy that I hadn’t been praying as much as I usually do and I had narrowed my awareness of God’s activity in my life, etc... I just kept running my mind thru a litany of negative thoughts and realized that I was getting down on myself. Again.
When I got to church, I didn’t feel especially welcomed but then, again, I wasn’t feeling very welcoming. I didn’t think that praise team practice went very well, my timing was off, my voice was cracking and I felt the negative voice return, “What kind of person are you? You don’t need to be praising God, look how terrible you are doing!” I tried to joke with the other praise team members to get my mind off this torrent of negative thoughts and concentrate on praising God, praying that I would find some relief from this mental torture.
Being a Christian for over 40 years and a professional counselor for over 30 years, you would think that I wouldn’t deal with these kinds of issues, that my life is perfect, that I never deal with self-doubt, that I am in perfect control of my mental faculties at all times. Not true.
However, this isn’t the first time that I have experienced such negativity. I’ve noticed this occurs when there are two things going on simultaneously: 1) I am exhausted and 2) I am going to experience some spiritual growth. So, I have learned when this happens, I need to wait and expect something to happen. I pray, asking God to give me some emotional relief and asking God to give me spiritual acuity. In fact, I’ve noticed that many times when I am depressed, down, or negative, God can sharpen my ability to see Him at work. It doesn’t always happen but God does come thru more often than not. Okay, He ALWAYS comes thru, I just am not always ready to receive what He wants to teach me.
Interestingly, in our pastor’s sermon that day, I heard this, “We can assume that God is gonna come thru.” He was preaching about Daniel and Daniel’s desire to please God rather than follow the law of the land. Daniel, it is believed, was approximately 80 years old when he was thrown into the Lion’s Den for defying King Darius’ edict. Our pastor said, “Daniel had been faithful to God and God has been faithful to Daniel, in taking care of Daniel because he would rather please God than man.” Maybe Daniel was thinking, “I’m an old man, I’ve served God, maybe this is the end. Is God gonna come thru this time?” But the pastor reminded us, “Hope in God is NEVER false. We can assume that God is always going to come thru.”
Upon hearing this sermon, I felt a lift, a weight just leave me. The negative voices in my head stopped. I went up to the front to sing with the praise team, “Whom Shall I Fear?” which has the terrific line, “The God of Angel Armies is always by my side.”
As I was leaving, walking back to the car with Karyn, I heard my pastor’s question in my head, a question he asked just before ending the sermon, “How certain are you that God is gonna come thru?
My answer came quickly, “VERY.”BE HOLY.BE A MAN.
"We're gonna put our money into a computer rather than marriage counseling." This was a statement from a man with a rather troubled marriage. "I don't think counseling is going to help us any. We can spend time together in front of the computer and find good resources there." I looked at his wife and she, in a rather pie-eyed fashion, gave her tacit permission towards her husband's solution to their many marriage troubles. He proceeded with a rather lengthy story about how a new, more powerful computer, would be the solution not only to their family woes but also the difficulties in his marriage. "We will gather around the computer as a family and make our computer a place of bonding, we'll become stronger if we invest in that rather than counseling." I attempted to protest but he had won his wife over to his point of view. They cancelled their remaining sessions and I never saw them again.
Do you think the computer helped this marriage? A computer is amoral. It is neither evil nor good. It is what is done with the computer that brings in the morality.
I have been able to watch this man's behavior from a distance and unfortunately, his life has fallen apart. His wife divorced him. Several things transpired that she could not live with: 1) he used the computer for watching porn, 2) he used the computer to develop relationships with numerous women with whom he had affairs, 3) he was arrested for having sex with a patient, 4) he was also arrested for domestic violence and 5) he lost his medical license.
The computer also affected his children. One of his children became addicted to pornography (from the same computer), another was charged with sexual molestation and must now register as a sex offender for the rest of his life, the rest of his children have completely cut him off, wanting nothing to do with him.
I'm not saying that if they had continued in counseling that everything would have been perfect and these problems would not have occurred but I think it is ironic that the very thing he convinced his wife would solve all of their problems seriously contributed to his moral failure and the subsequent behavior of his family. I'm also not saying that the computer was his main problem. His main problem (in spite of claiming the name of Christian) was old-fashioned selfishness. He was not allowing God to transform him.
I'm writing this to you to ask you a few questions:
Into what are you pouring your time, energy and money?
Have you convinced yourself that possessions will bring your happiness?
Or have you invested your life into accountability, honest relationships and seeking God's will for your life?
God is very clear about His will: It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God; and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. The Lord will punish men for all such sins, as we have already told you and warned you. For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit.
I have heard that this man is now trying to repair the damage he has done and is trying again to live a life that is pleasing to God. I find that encouraging.
Please pray for him.
BE A MAN.
He sat across the table from me, trying to convince me that his behavior wasn't hurting anybody. "I'm not having sex, I'm just having some fun!" He proceeded to tell me his story. It's one that I have heard many times. Unfortunately.
His behavior started fairly innocently. He was happily married but there were occasions that his wife would work late. During these times, on occasion, he would call a "chat line." The conversations started out innocent enough but he didn't realize that he was being fleeced. God speaks about this. He says,"with persuasive words she led him astray; she seduced him with her smooth talk."
The young lady on the other end of the phone started flirting with him and tapped into his ego. The next time he called her, she talked about how wonderful he was and how he helped her not to feel so lonely. A few calls later, the trap was sprung. He gave her his credit card number so that she would "tell him things that she knew he wanted to hear." His calls continued with greater frequency. He would get out of bed where his wife was sleeping to call this young lady. She was always available to him and would say things that his wife would never say.
He started to feel guilty and talked to the young lady about not calling her anymore. That is when she set the hook. She told him that she was a college student and that she needed the money to pay for school. She admitted that she did this with just a few men and that they "weren't doing anything wrong."
He looked at me and said, "but, I'm not cheating!!! I'm not having sex with her. We're just having a little fun . No one's getting hurt and I'm helping her pay for her education."
I cautioned him about his behavior. I explained to him what such behavior leads to. That's when he said, "funny you should say that...." He then proceeded with this all too familiar story:
This young lady suggested that they meet. It was a town that he visited on business often. She explained that she offered private services to help men feel more masculine and perform better in bed. She explained that he would enjoy it as "most men do."
He went to the house that she and several other young women (who were working their way thru college too) used to "help men." There was never any intercourse. He was "learning how to let a woman be in charge." He found these lessons exhilarating. He paused in his story, "but, I'm not cheating!!! We aren't having sex and I really like how she makes me feel." It's as if he was trying to convince himself more than he was trying to convince me.
I would love to be able to tell you that this man conquered this illicit behavior but I cannot. His life became a disaster.
One night when he was talking to this young woman on the phone, his wife happened to be listening on the extension. The next day, when he got home from work, he found his belongings on the yard, the locks changed and a court injunction prohibiting him from ever seeing his wife again. The divorce proceedings were quick and he soon found himself on the street with no home.
I haven't had any contact with him since. I don't know where he is and I don't know if he got help. I do pray for him, hoping that he has turned to God and is living a life that represents Christ well.
Why do I tell you this story? I guess you need to know that it is easy for men to rationalize their sinful behavior. Men have a tendency to compartmentalize their behavior and think that their lives cannot be affected.
God has something to say about this. "The heart is hopelessly dark and deceitful, a puzzle that no one can figure out. But I, God, search the heart and examine the mind. I get to the heart of the human. I get to the root of things. I treat them as they really are, not as they pretend to be."
So, what is in your heart?
Are you pretending?
Ask God to give you a new heart.BE HOLY.
BE A MAN.
If you stumble into sin, believer, don't give up; don't allow hopelessness to consume you, the deceitfulness of sin to blind you, or the weight of shame to defeat you. In the morning and evening prayer we pray, in part, the following: "I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not fall" (Ps. 16:8
). Christ is
at your right hand, and this fall shall not be final for you; He took the final fall.
Yes, you may feel as though your worst day has cast a shadow over you that will never break to show the light of day, but, happily, you're wrong. God, in Christ, has declared you to be righteous (2 Cor. 5:21
). Of the righteous we read: "for though they fall seven times, they will rise again" (Prov. 24:16
NRSV). You will rise, friend, because Christ will lift you up. He took the ultimate fall in order that you should rise.
No one knows how many times I've had to encourage myself, thinking these thoughts, repeating the words of this post to myself. How I didn't play dead but arose from sin is a testimony to God's sheer grace. This post is as much an exhortation to myself as it is for anyone else experiencing difficulties or tragedies, whether self-caused or otherwise.
What do you do on the worst day of your life? Rise: not because you're inherently worthy of being named righteous. Rise because the one who took the ultimate fall declares you righteous. Rise because, though you sinned, though you deserve the fate of the wicked like the rest of us, there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Rom. 8:1
But rise, too, because you neither honor the Lord nor serve the body of Christ by remaining fallen. Don't play dead, possum. In Christ you have been made alive (Col. 2:13
). Play dead to your old, sinful nature or past. But in Christ, even when you sin, don't play dead -- don't remain defeated. In Him you are more than one who has conquered all spiritually negative realities (Rom. 8:37
). "So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God" (Col. 3:1
You can avoid re-offending others by rising, and thinking healthy, spiritual thoughts: "whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things" (Phil. 4:8
). All offenses begin with thoughts. We are instructed to destroy arguments raised up against the knowledge of God.
But the apostle Paul also added, "We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle
raised up against the knowledge of God" (2 Cor. 10:5
NRSV, emphasis added). How many thoughts rise up against the reality of God's holy existence and righteous standards? We are taught to destroy such thoughts, to take them captive and make them obedient to Christ (2 Cor. 10:5
I picture such thoughts as personified. I imagine capturing them, putting them into a prison cell, while Christ stands watch over them as Guard. If I fail to do so, then I may entertain such thoughts, have them affect me emotionally, and then obey them. When I obey them, I sin. "But one is tempted by one's own desire, being lured and enticed by it; then, when that desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and that sin, when it is fully grown, gives birth to death. Do not be deceived, my beloved" (James 1:15-16
But when you sin, no matter the degree, take it immediately to Christ. "If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9
NRSV). Don't let sin drag you into a hopeless, despondent, dejected place, out of which you feel impossible to escape. By His grace and forgiveness you rise up, and you keep rising up. You don't rise up only once. You will need to rise up every time you fall.
More than that, you will need to rise up every time you think
about a past fall. Such thoughts about your past have a tendency to paralyze you emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Paralyzed, you will play dead. No: in Christ you must rise up from the guilt of your past. Though you fall seven times a day, you will rise -- you must
rise (Prov. 24:16
The Lord foreknew every sin you would ever commit when He by grace through faith in Christ saved your soul. You don't ever take Him by surprise by any thought, desire, or action. In Christ He has already declared you holy, sanctified (set apart from the world and for His service and care), and righteous. You don't let Him down because you don't hold Him up.
You are becoming more and more like Christ (Rom. 8:29
), slow as such may seem, and your heavenly Father understands completely all of your eccentricities, particularities, and unique qualities. This is how, you see, you keep on rising. Give your defeats to the One who defeated sin, death, and hell (1 Cor. 15:56-57
; 1 John 3:8
). Give your hopelessness to the God of hope (Rom. 15:13
). Whatever you do, don't play dead, possum, but rise. This post was written by William Watson Birch. You can find the original post with comments here: http://www.classicalarminian.com/2013/01/saturday-devotion-dont-play-dead.htmlBE HOLY.BE A MAN.
I was tasked with assessing a man regarding his sexual addiction.
Unfortunately, his tale was all too familiar.
As he sat across from me telling me that he is now considered a sexual offender and must register with the local police every time he moves, he started to unfold his story. He told me that he had found his Dad's stash of Playboy and Hustler magazines when he was just eight years old. That is a bad sign... The earlier a man is exposed to porn the greater are his chances that he will become addicted and the greater are his chances of getting into legal trouble.
The more he looked at porn, the more he wanted to look at porn. (Interesting cycle, don't you think?) The more he looked at porn, the more he fantasized about doing what he was watching on the porn movies.
The more he watched porn, the less developed his social skills became. This happens because porn causes a man to be selfish and just think about his own pleasure. Friendships are unnecessary. Girls are unnecessary because the girls in porn movies and magazines are always accessible and there for a man's pleasure.
It's a terrible cycle that entraps a man. He wants to approach girls but fears rejection. He wants to do the things he fantasizes about but he fears she will say no. Finally, his isolation led him to frustration and he decided he would act upon some of his fantasies.
A really weird thing about men addicted to porn is that they think that women are turned on by seeing male genitalia. The porn that men watch gives a terribly distorted perspective of sexuality. In actuality, women are more attracted to an intimate relationship than the male physique.
This man started to act upon his fantasies from the porn that he had been viewing over the years.
One of his fantasies was that he would "accidentally" leave his zipper down and a woman would notice and become aroused. He would walk around in grocery stores with his zipper down, fantasizing about his inevitable sexual encounter. He was disappointed that no women noticed.
So, he developed another plan. He decided that he would sit in his car close to the exits of stores with his pants open and hope that women would see and become aroused. That didn't work either.
So, his next step would be to call women over to his car, "to ask a question" and hope that with his pants open, they would notice, be sexually aroused and want to be with him. He continued to be very disappointed.
He thought, because of his distorted perspective of women and sexuality, that what women were wanting to see was that he was sexually aroused, that he was erect, ready for sex. So, he would sit in his car and fantasize about a woman jumping into his car and they would drive to a secluded place for a sexual encounter.
One morning, while he was sitting in his car masturbating and fantasizing, he rolled his window down and asked a woman to come over because he had a "question" he wanted to ask her. She approached his car, looked at him and where his hand was and instantly became repulsed. She noted his license plate and called the police when she got home.
She made a report to the police and he was arrested and prosecuted. His prosecution was made public, his family was embarrassed and he lost his job.
As he finished his story, I asked, "have you gotten rid of your porn?" I knew his answer would be "no." I was right. The court wanted recommendations at the end of my assessment. My recommendations were necessary: no cable tv, no vcr/dvd player, no internet, no smart phone, no porn. If he was caught in possession of any of these items, he would go to prison. Also, he needed intensive counseling. If this failed, then he would need residential treatment.
However, when the judge found out that he had not given up his porn, he acted swiftly. This man immediately went to prison.
Wouldn't it be nice if all of my stories ended in a positive note?
This is a depressing, disgusting story.Porn wins."Behold, you have sinned against the LORD and be sure that your sin will find you out."
BE A MAN.
“My car ran out of gas and it stranded me on the highway for a while.” “The store at the mall declined my credit card because it was maxed out.” “I didn’t get my coffee today”.
Have you ever heard phrases like these? Have you ever been the one to say them?
In our culture, I hear phrases like these every day. Sometimes, I hear them on TV, sometimes in the midst of counseling sessions, and more often online. The attitude behind these statements reflects a reason for the deterioration of the world around us.
It is a victim mentality that convinces us that everything that is bad in this world is a personal attack.
As a result of this idea, we fail to take responsibility for our own actions. If your car ran out of gas, it may be because you didn’t fill it (sometimes it is a money issue). If you are on a shopping spree for things you don’t need, and your credit card declines…then maybe one of the culprits could be your spending habits.
Also, yes, you are still responsible for your behavior if you did not get your coffee…go to bed earlier if possible! Granted, there are times when we can’t help or prevent what happens to us, but true character is displayed when we respond to these adversities in a noble manner.
Now before I start getting hate mail accusing me of being judgmental, it is important to note that I have fallen victim of a victim mentality many times in my life. I was convinced that the bad I was experiencing was happening to me and I never questioned whether I was contributing.
If we never take responsibility for what we have caused, what we have done, or who we have hurt, then our spiritual growth will be stunted. We will never see the need for redemption and will continue to believe that the world is out to make our lives miserable. This is no way to live.
Take steps to grow.
This post was written by Rev DeCrastos. For the original post, go to: http://other-words.net/2012/12/05/oops-did-i-just-say-that/BE HOLY.BE A MAN.
Is it appropriate to reveal a long held hidden secret in this type of blog? I am not sure, but today I am going to do just that. This secret is one that my brother and I have been holding on to since the late 80’s. In fact, he may object to the fact that I am revealing this secret. Okay, here it goes…
When we were younger, my brother and I were playing in the field behind our house. Like normal boys who didn’t listen to the voice of reason (and ironically had a firefighter for a father), after jumping ramps with our bikes we became bored and decided to light small things on fire (leaves, trash, etc). Well as you could imagine this got out of hand quickly and soon a large fire erupted and engulfed a significant portion of the field. The next few minutes felt like an eternity. All we had were cardboard boxes that we had brought some things in so we thought it would be a great idea to somehow try to put the fire out with these boxes. This was a bad idea. Eventually, after kicking sand on the fire everything was fine. From then on we vowed to not reveal our secret until we were adults and were guaranteed not to get in trouble.
We are brothers, so you already know that we used this event to blackmail each other, and force each other to do the other’s chores. All we had to do was look at each other and say “I will tell Mom and Dad about the matches”…and all arguments would cease. The truth was always kept hidden to control the other sibling.
As humans, our tendency in life is to attempt to make our situation look better than it is. We try to hide or even ignore the truth when it is inconvenient because we feel like people will look down on us or we will even get “in trouble” if we are transparent.
If all truth belongs to God then it stands to reason that living a life that embraces truth will lead to blessing. Doing the right thing will never return void…it may hurt at first, but it will always benefit.
Trust in God today. Do what is right. More tomorrow...
This post was written by Rev DeCrastos. You can find the original post here:http://otherwordsdotnet.wordpress.com/2012/09/29/getting-in-trouble/
No more lying then. Everyone must tell the truth to his fellow believers because we are all members together in the body of Christ.
Honesty is essential to recovery. Honesty is essential to intimacy.
But honesty is not easy.
We were not created to be isolated, independent creatures. We were created to be interdependent. We need each other. And in order for us to be helped by others and to be helpful to others, we need to practice honesty. That means we must learn how to talk to each other about our thoughts and our feelings and our needs. We must learn to talk about our struggles and failures, about our dreams and our successes.
Honesty is the soil in which intimate relationships grow. It creates the possibility of being known and loved for who we really are. But it is also full of risks. If we tell the truth about ourselves, people may not listen. They may not want to know. They may not understand. They may judge and reject. They may dislike us. They may give us simple answers to unanswerable questions. They may repeat what we have said to others.
We hesitate to be honest because we have experienced these things in the past. Our feelings may have been minimized. Our thoughts may have been devalued. Our reality may have been denied. But in order to grow healthy relationships, in order to heal and recover, we need to begin to take risks. Learning honesty will be a process for us. It will not come quickly. But as we practice the disciplines of honesty we gradually become more secure in telling the truth.
I am tired of lying, when it would be just as easy to tell the truth.
But I am afraid of honesty, Lord.
It's not as easy as it sounds.
Help me to pursue honesty today.
Help me to be honest with you.
Help me to be honest with myself.
Help me to build a community of faith
where honesty is the norm.
Build in me a capacity for truth.Amen.
Copyright Dale and Juanita RyanNational Association for Christian Recovery