Truth : “the real facts about something : the things that are true.” (Webster)
We are so busy focusing on what others define as true that we don’t take time to look at the truth about ourselves.
For this, I am the worst of sinners. If anyone (well, my husband mostly) dares to identify the truth in me (mainly my flaws), well, then the claws may come out.
If we have no problem identifying what we see as true in others, why is it so difficult to accept it ourselves?
Bonhoeffer says “It can never be good, however, to deceive yourself about the truth, for if we deceive ourselves about the truth of our own life, we will certainly also deceive ourselves about the truth of God. And it’s certainly never godly to close our eyes—which God gave us that we can see our neighbors and their needs—when they have to see sadness and horror. It is certainly never right, therefore to avoid the things that frighten and depress us.”
Sometimes what is within us might be the most frightening of all.
So we mask, we dull, we suppress. More texting, more social media, more work, more drinking, more spending, more eating, more ignoring, more socializing, more sexing, more isolation…more. Ignore the news, ignore the homeless, ignore the beggar. If we don’t look, we don’t see. If we don’t see, we aren’t responsible.
If I stay busy, or just close my eyes, I chose to avoid what is true about me. Worse yet, I ignore what God has spoken. I miss my responsibility to reflect Him in the sadness and horror.
As the prophet Isaiah says in chapter 61:
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord‘s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn…
May I see truth. May I not chose to close my eyes.