My 4 year old lied to me. He looked me in the eye as I asked him repeatedly “Did you take……” and repeatedly he said ‘No Dad’. I showed him the empty wrapper hoping to jar his memory into place but he still said ‘No Dad’.
At first I was MAD then beside myself LIVID and then finally frightened!
I wondered where he had learnt it. School and TV were my first suspects…I know I should have been paying more attention to what these kids are learning from friends in school and NICKjr. Yes that must be it but then an inconceivable thought flashed by … ME! No-way! The more I thought about it the harder it was to shake off. He might have been around when 1 or 2 half-truths were told? White-lies I had brushed aside? A little mis-direction here and there with friends and relatives. I was starting to see a pattern that was problematic.
Hold off any judgements in my character till you have examined your “spot-less” lives. Yes I realize these kids are like sponges, they soak up whatever we adults are dishing out. Despair, Dislike, Distrust, Disdain, Destruction (i’m running out of negative D-words but you get the picture). However I believe this malady stems from a far deeper problem. No really I’m not trying to wriggle out of anything. What if its wired into our genome! Researchers have stipulated that the Prefrontal cortex (situated just behind the forehead) increases in activity when we lie. This is also the region responsible for executive control i.e. the ability to regulate thoughts or actions to achieve goals. So perhaps its the natural course of evolution? An article in Psychology Today states “that lying by embellishment or fabrication, is something we do as part of our everyday lives. ITS PART OF BEING HUMAN”. So you see it’s not me its my DNA
I guess this is why its so hard to trust people these days. We’ve evolved at deception and lying. I can’t forget a conversation I had with 70 year old Mr. Davis, my wife and I wanted to rent his condo in Nashville TN. I was miles away in Philadelphia and wanted him to send me some type of contract what he said was “I’m from the old school… my word and a handshake are all we will need”. You might call him stupid in this litigation-prone era but there was something refreshing about doing business like that. Something about the whole episode reminded me of the way God did business. You see God doesn’t back out on His Word! He doesn’t Lie or Deceive ! Its a pity that the vast majority of people that call themselves, His Children can’t say the same!
In a moment of complete honesty and introspection, I asked myself why do I feel the need to lie. I came up with 2 root-causes
1. Fear. The fear of rejection, of what people would say if they knew, of not measuring up, of disappointment, of hurting others, of my inadequacies .
2. Deception. The desire to mis-direct. To steer along the wrong route for whatever temporary gain or advantage I might gain. Sometimes not correcting a mis-conception others may have
I find that most of the times I have been lied to fall under one of these two also, and people lie A LOT! This tends to taint ALL relationships. I find that I filter all exchanges through these lens..am I being lied to?
Even (and I’m being painfully candid here) my relationship with God…. Is He misleading me or worse still toying with me?
Follow my logic for a second, if man is supposed to be made in God’s image and man finds it so easy to lie and deceive and betray perhaps the problem is in our design? This logic hunted me for a long time and then I found these…..
Numbers 23: 18 GOD IS NOT MAN, ONE GIVEN TO LIES AND NOT A SON OF MAN CHANGING HIS MIND (MSG)
Titus 1:2 THIS TRUTH GIVE THEM CONFIDENCE THAT THEY HAVE ETERNAL LIFE, WHICH GOD – WHO DOES NOT LIE– PROMISED THEM BEFORE THE WORLD BEGAN… (NLT)
Hebrews 6:18 SO GOD GAVE HIS PROMISE AND HIS OATH. THESE TWO THINGS ARE UNCHANGEABLE BECAUSE IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR GOD TO LIE. (NLT)
Once I saw these I was liberated! I replaced my flawed logic with a new one. I began singing a new Mantra… MAN DOES LIE A LOT BUT GOD DOES NOT.
I gave up my self(Man)-confidence for a GOD-Confidence, the former wasn’t working anyway. I decided to quit with the lies. I wanted to be done with the fear and deception so I traded in my lies for His truth. Every lie in trying to keep up with the Jones actually causes you to loose out on God’s provision and promises. This is not because He withholds them NO (actually NEVER) but its like you’re keeping your hands back in your pockets and rejecting his gift. Your heart is not just in the right place to receive.
Try letting go of the lies.. the fear and deception. Go on try it. Beware though some friendships will disintegrate because at their core they were toxic. You’ll have fewer friends but stronger friendships. You’ll have more peace and less worry and that’s not so bad.
You should try it!
Oh Mr Davis passed away 1 year later but our handshake agreement still stood until we moved to another city. Makes you wonder doesn’t it. I guess there are some people, like God who DON’T LIE.
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