I Told the Truth at the DMV
I had to get my driver’s license renewed yesterday. If you’ve done that before, you know it’s not a fun chore. I drove to the Department of Motor Vehicles, circled forever looking for a place to park, and stood in line waiting for my number to be called (and listening to people gripe at the poor DMV employees). Once my number was called I had to present my birth certificate, my passport, and proof of residency. Then I had to take a test to identify six major road signs (I missed Do Not Enter). Then came the really painful part…the clerk behind the desk asked a tough question, “what’s your weight?”
The room was packed. There was no privacy. I wanted to whisper. I really wanted to lie. But, I didn’t. I told the truth.
My old driver's licenses prove that I've been lying about my weight since the first time I got a license on my sixteenth birthday.
I’m not alone. A recent survey from bettyconfidential.com reported that 68 percent of women admit that the weight listed on their driver’s license is falsified. I have to wonder if the other 32 percent are lying about lying. Research from the University of Massachusetts Amherst indicates that in an average 10-minute discussion 60 percent of us lie—approximately three times.
Why? Because our culture gives us the green light. We call these deceptions “little white lies.” We announce that these kinds of lies do no harm and that “everyone lies a little.” We convince ourselves that it’s okay to lie and to break the rules if we’re not hurting ourselves or others. What’s more, as a society we are pretty open about our belief that Truth is relative.
But, I know different (and I bet, deep down, you do too). Let’s put aside the messages about truth that the World is hurling our way and focus on God’s standard. If you do a word search of “truth” in the Bible, the list of references is going to be long (228 passages to be exact). That’s because this concept of “Truth” is an important one in our faith. We certainly can’t hit all 228 bases, but here are the basics.
1. Jesus is our standard of Truth
Jesus Himself said, “ I am the way, the Truth, and the life” (John 14:6). He is the definition of Truth. He is the perfect standard; He determines what is right and good and true.
2. Jesus reveals the Truth to us through the Bible
Jesus is Truth and we can learn about his standards through the Word. In fact “the Word” is actually one of Jesus’ names (John 1:14).
3. We should pursue Truth
Psalm 25:4-5 says, “Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths, guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.”
Is that the cry of your heart? Do you ask God to guide you in His Truth? Do you actively seek it through His Word? Are you as well versed in the Truth of God as you are in the standards of this world?
One way to pursue Truth is to flee from falsehood. The world may tell us that Truth is relative and that deception is normal and necessary to protect the feelings of others. Does God’s Word back this up? Hardly.
Proverbs 12:17 says, “A truthful witness gives honest testimony, but a false witness tells lies.”
Proverbs 12:19 teaches, “Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue lasts only a moment.”
In Proverbs 12:22 we read, “The LORD detests lying lips, but he delights in men who are truthful.”
Here’s the clear bottom line, Truth matters! We need to be passionate about seeking to know God’s Truth and committed to speaking Truth at every opportunity. Failure to do so does have consequences. Little lies turn into big lies. White lies turn into dark pits of bondage and deception.
4. Truth has the power to set us free
I’ve got to tell you, being honest at the DMV felt great! I quietly patted myself on the back for being one of only 32% of women willing to be honest when the DMV clerk asks the weight question.
Since we’ve been talking about the consequences of sin this month I’ve been looking for areas in my life where I habitually buck God’s standard. As a result, I’ve been speeding less, I’ve “fibbed” less, I’ve studied God’s Truth more. And it feels great!
Striving to know Truth and to live out God’s standards may seem uncomfortable at times. But it absolutely leads to freedom.
Nancy and Dannah wrote about this exact process in “Lies Young Women Believe.”
“There are consequences to believing lies. Those consequences may include depression, problems in relationships, or hopelessness. There are also results to believing Truth. Jesus promises that you and I can know Truth and that ‘the Truth will set [us] free'”(John 8:32)….
Will it be easy?
No. And as we said earlier, you’ll be in the minority. You’ll need to stand against the crowd. That’s why you need to decide early in life whether you’re going to go with the crowd or stand for Truth. The way you are living your life now is establishing a pattern for compromise or for walking in Truth. Decisions you make today will have long-term implications. If can be difficult up front to base your life on the Truth, but if you do, you will reap the benefits for the rest of your life” (Lies Young Women Believe, 39).
I’d rather have the life-long benefits of pursing Truth than the temporary perks of deception wouldn’t you? The world tells us that Truth doesn’t matter. God clearly feels differently. Which standard will you choose?
What are some practical ways that you can pursue Truth this week? What are some areas where you are struggling to choose between God’s Truth and the World’s deception?
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