Sunday, October 12, 2014

Truth be told . . .

The ABC’s of knowing God better: the letter “T”
And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.”  – Exodus 34:6 NIV
“I am the way, the truth, and the life.”  – Jesus, as quoted in John 14:6 NKJV

I’ve always been one to believe whatever anyone told me. Call me gullible. Call me naïve, but I’m a trusting soul.
My mother taught me to always tell the truth, even if it got me into trouble. Like the time my brother, sister, cousin Billy, and I were playing in the backyard, where a green canvas Army tent stood. When my mother called my siblings inside for a few minutes, Billy decided to hide from them.
“Don’t tell them where I am,” he said as he slipped into the tent.
“I won’t,” I said, feeling awesome that my older cousin trusted me—the youngest of the family—with such important information.
When they returned, I put on the most solemn expression I could and said, “Billy isn’t in the tent.”
I’ve never been able to lie, and I figured everyone else was wired the same way.
But I discovered, to my pain, they aren’t.
Like the time my high school boyfriend slipped me a note on the bus coming home from the class picnic at the end of the school year and whispered, “No matter what happens, always remember I love you.”
Yeah, right. The note was a “Dear Michele” letter. But I clung to his spoken words throughout that miserable summer even though my heart was broken. Just before the new school year began, I learned he dumped me for a cheerleader.
But it didn’t sour me on people. He was just one lying jerk, right?
Then in college I got burned again. I was in the dorm lobby with my then-fiancé (who at least told me the truth when he dumped me a year later) waiting for one of the girls in the group I hung around with to return from an errand. It was her birthday, and we’d planned a surprise party. Tammy, one of the gang, told me she’d let me know when the birthday girl came. 
So when Tammy came down and said Penny hadn’t returned yet but she’d come get me when she did, I had no reason not to believe her. Turns out she lied. Penny had returned. Tammy went up to the party and told everyone I didn’t want to come. And I wondered for the longest time why I suddenly didn’t have any friends.
As a teacher, I learned students were adept at lying—no hint whatever of deceit in their eyes.
I’m sure glad there is one person I know who will never lie—because He can’t. It’s not in His nature.
“God is not human, that he should lie,” Scripture tells us (Numbers 23:19). He is “abundant in truth” (Exodus 34:6), “a faithful God, without deceit” (Deuteronomy 52:4), and “the God of truth” (Isaiah 65:16). The apostle Paul called Him “the ever truthful God Who cannot deceive” (Titus 1:2).
People will deceive us. But God never will.
And that’s a truth I can stake my life on.
Thank you, God, that I can trust what You say and know that You will never break Your promises. Amen.
Special-Tea: Read Psalm 119:41–48

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