Christmas will be here soon. This season of Advent is a time for preparation. On Christmas Day, we will celebrate the birth of the Christ child. Why was Jesus born? We need not look any further than His own words to find out. “For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice (John 18:37).” We live in a time when truth is hard to find. Advent is a good time to reflect on our own truthfulness. I invite you to read more…
I read once that the average American lies 11 times a week. Of course, this assumes people were honest when they responded to the survey. The real number might be much larger. It seems that the world has a bad case of “Truth Decay.” Advent is a great time for us to get a checkup.
We try to make everything subjective these days. Real objective truth seems elusive. It seems that truth in our modern time is simply anything an individual or social group wants it to be. This idea of subjective truth has not only infected our culture, but it has also infected our churches and our seminaries. Christians themselves struggle to live by the truth. Advent is a good time to reflect and ask ourselves, “Is truth within me?” “Am I living a truthful life?”
John 17:17 tells us that God’s Word is truth. John 1:1 tells us that the Word is God, and John 1:14 tells us that the Word became flesh. Therefore, Jesus does not merely speak truth, He is truth incarnate. Finally, Isaiah 40:8 states, “The grass withers, the flower wilts, but the word of our God stands forever.”
The sad reality is that truth decay has been evident throughout the ages. Isaiah 59:14 tells us, “For truth stumbles in the public square.” Jeremiah 7:28 states, “Faithfulness has disappeared; the word itself is banished from their speech.” The lack of truth has been evident throughout history and it is clearly on display in our world today.
Truth is obfuscated in two primary ways. There are overt misstatements of truth and there are lies of omission when the truth is purposely obscured. Concealing the truth, even when no words are spoken, is nonetheless still a lie. I am going to focus on this second form of untruthfulness today. I am specifically referring to the ways in which we conceal our sins, struggles, pains, and brokenness from others.
The sins we commit in the dark, and out of view of others, have a way of imprisoning us. We become slaves to our secrets. We cannot overcome these things on our own. We need a Savior. We need a messiah!
Can I ask you some very direct questions? Are there some areas of your life hidden in darkness? What hidden things in your life have you in chains? Do you conceal the real you behind a mask? Reflect on those questions during Advent. Invite Jesus into your life again and ask Him to help you live a more truthful life.
Since starting this ministry 10 years ago, I have received thousands of letters, emails, and personal comments from people telling me about their hidden brokenness. After revealing their secret to me, many tell me that I am the first and only person they have ever told. My heart breaks with the realization that they have held this pain in for so long.
Jesus wants to be born anew during this Advent Season. He longs to break any chains that bind us. In John 8:12 Jesus says, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” He is calling us to live truthful, transparent, and sincere lives. He knows we can find healing and recovery when we willingly share ourselves completely in Christian community with others. Luke 8:17 states, “For there is nothing hidden that will not become visible, and nothing secret that will not be known and come to light.” So, I ask you, why are we hiding?
In 1 John 1:6-8 it is written, “If we say, “We have fellowship with him,” while we continue to walk in darkness, we lie and do not act in truth. But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of his Son Jesus cleanses us from all sin. If we say, “We are without sin,” we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us”
The world is filled with lies. It longs for truth. When we live by the truth, we are living as God intended us to live. Let’s go forth without fear, proclaiming the news that the Messiah has come to set us free! Jesus said, “I was born to testify to the truth!” Now it is our turn to do the same. We must readily admit that we are sinners who need to be saved.
Maranatha, come Lord Jesus come. Heal my truth decay. Renew and strengthen me during this time of preparation. Grant me the courage to live a more truthful life. Remove anything in my life that separates me from you. Help me to walk in the light of truth. Amen!
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