The Hidden Truth
Most of us agree it’s best to be honest. It’s a key feature we look for in our leaders, and we definitely expect it from our children. But on close inspection, how much untruth are we allowing into our daily lives?
Truth, according to the scriptures, is the “knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come” (Doctrine & Covenants 93:24). As we seek to add more light to our lives, living truthfully gets us closer to that goal, since “whatsoever is truth is light” (D&C 84:45). One of the hazards of modern life, however, is that we often accept untruths without knowing that’s what they are.
In C.S. Lewis’ masterpiece “The Screwtape Letters,” Screwtape, a senior devil writing to his still-in-training nephew, Wormwood, says, “Indeed, the safest road to hell is the gradual one: the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.”
It isn’t always obvious what is right and wrong, and being earthly beings, we frequently listen not to our hearts and the voice of God, but to the voice of the world to give us direction – and that’s where we stumble.
F. Enzio Busche once said, “Our brain, the great computer where all the facts of life’s memories are held together, can also be programmed by the ‘flesh,’ with its self-centered ideas to deceive the spiritual self.” Without continually striving to stay close to God and employing constant self-reflection, he said, the brain can use “look-alike truths” or even manipulate truth altogether, leaving us confused and miserable.
As M. Catherine Thomas, author of “Light in the Wilderness,” says succinctly, “The important thing to remember is that the natural man deals in illusions that do not represent reality nor the truth of his being.”
“It isn’t always obvious what is right and wrong, and being earthly beings, we frequently listen not to our hearts and the voice of God, but to the voice of the world to give us direction – and that’s where we stumble.”
However, the good news is that since all thought is a vibration of energy, we can outsmart the enemy and discover for ourselves what is true and what isn’t. Simply put, truth creates strength, and untruth creates weakness – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Even small untruths, compounded by time, can slowly weaken the one holding onto them.
Do your thoughts make you feel strong and empowered, or weak and incapable? Take time today to honestly assess the thoughts in your mind. As Thomas says, “Allow the mind to experience a possibly truer option. ‘How would I feel if I didn’t believe that thought? Catching our natural man in the very act requires some kindness and patience since we usually let go of the old ways only a little at a time,” Thomas concludes. Be patient with yourself, she counsels. “Just becoming aware can lessen the power of the negative feelings, as insight and release often go together.”
As we know, “the truth shall make (us) free” (John 8:32), and so examining and removing the untruths we have embraced, even when it’s painful, can release us and allow us to live more fully in truth, and more fully in joy.