If you are alive, you have the experience of someone lying to you, or more than likely, if you were a child you told one or more lies to someone. To the reader who just mumbled, I never lie, well you just did.
Lies are dangerous; Lies inhibit growth and prevent progress. The worst (most damaging) lies are not the ones your children tell. The worst lies are not the ones parents tell children. They are not the ones you tell your employer or even the ones spouses tell. The most dangerous and damaging lies are the ones we tell ourselves. Remember that lying comes from the devil – Jn 8:44 and that we can resist him (Jas 4:7). Someone is thinking, I don’t lie to myself. If not, you are the exception. Most of us have and do.
Ten Lies We Tell Ourselves
- “I Don’t Have Enough Time.” You tell yourself, you will share the gospel with “so-and-so” when I have more time. I wish I had time to stop by the hospital (nursing home) to see them. I am so busy with (job, school, family) I just do not have time to teach a class, help with VBS, etc. The truth is that we have time for what we want to do. We have time to watch TV, sports, go on vacations, go fishing, see a movie, go out to eat. We all have the same 24 hours in a day. We just need to prioritize our time to do what we should.
- “I Have Plenty of Time.” Life moves quickly, but we tend to think we will have tomorrow to do what we should. Yet, Peter says life is like a flowering grass that is here then gone (1 Pet 1:24). Again we say we must prioritize, does the grass really have to be cut today? Our children grow up fast, so make time to teach them and model Christian living for them today, do not wait for tomorrow. Prioritize, put God first today, Matt 6:33.
- “No One Will See Me (Knows Me Here).” Sometimes we feel anonymous in a large crowd or away from home. We think, no one will see me because, I’m on vacation. No one knows what I am doing online. No one will recognize me in this crowd. What a lie. Earlier this month, my family and I were in Orlando, and a family from the eastern part of my county recognized we were part of the church in Walker County. Paul reminds his readers that we do not live or die to ourselves, Rom 14:7.
- “God Made Me This Way; He Will Not Hold Me Accountable” People say this about alcoholism, temper, foul language, polygamy, adultery, homosexuality, etc. However, God says He created us blameless, (Ezek 28:15). The truth is that events, environment, and other factors can lead us to choose to sin. What God want is everyone to change (repent), (Lk 13:3).
- “I Can Ask for Forgiveness.” This is an abuse and misuse of grace. This is precisely what Paul condemns in Romans 5:18 – 6:2. If we plan to sin, planning on grace and forgiveness when we repent; do we really repent later? Are we really sorry for what we did?
- “My Intentions are Good.” Tell that to Uzzah who steadied the Ark of the Covenant, (2 Sam 6:3-7). Is it OK to steal to feed family? Or to lie to win an election? Does God wink when we sin for a good cause? Randy Travis rightly sang, “I hear tell the road to hell is paved with good intentions.” Saul of Tarsus had good intentions when he persecuted the early disciples.
- “Surely God is Pleased with . . .” This is presumptuous on our part. To presume to know what pleases God without asking (seeking to know) what He really thinks. Just because something feels right does not make it right. Just because “everyone else” believe something, does not mean the majority is right. Check out God’s word for “everything (you) need that pertains to life and godliness.”
- “I’m too Young.” Many plan to start serving God when they are older. Start now in the days of youth (Eccl 12:1). Be an example to others now while you are young, (1 Tim 4:12). You are never too young to do what is right.
- “I’m too Old.” Caleb was 80 when he took the mountains (Josh 14:6ff). For the Christian, older is prime. Are you too old or finally old enough?
- “They will never believe.” This statement doubts the power of the gospel, (Rom 1:16). What if someone had told themselves that about you? The Corinthians were some very worldly and immoral people like the culture around them, but they changed in Christ, (1 Cor 6:9-11).
What other lies to we tell ourselves?