Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Discern (08/12/10)
TITLE: THE VOICE OF TRUTH
By Cindy Barclay
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My brain is a menagerie; a cacophony of sounds and voices. Sometimes, I’ve listened to these silent voices for days or even years, before I realized some were cleverly crafted words of deception. Perhaps, if my thoughts were audible, I could quickly embrace truth or dismiss lies. I’ve embraced certain outlooks and opinions, not bothering to analyze their content. Learning to discern between three “voices” is changing the outcome and duration of my battles.
When we are saved, God begins a renewing process that will continue until that day of total redemption. Until then, our old man, our carnal nature still speaks quite loudly. Unless daily renewal of my mind is happening, I’m comfortable with that voice because it sounds reasonable and familiar. However, it seems my old nature wants to justify something instead of dealing with it. One way to discern if it’s me (the natural man) talking is the focus. Is it me or God? Is the focus the problem or the solution?
When a voice brings despair and condemnation, but not conviction, it should be a red flag that whatever is speaking is demonic and anti-Christ. Somehow, I listen to this voice way more than I should. It’s loud and intrusive, and subtly insistent. Just as Satan twisted God’s Word in the Garden of Eden, he is still twisting the truth to bring oppression and fear.
To borrow a phrase from a Casting Crown song, “But the Voice of Truth tells me a different story- the Voice of Truth says do not be afraid.” I have to train my ear to hear this voice. My mind needs to be renewed daily to recognize its truth and power. Spending daily time in His Word deposits treasury of wisdom and truth. As I grow in knowledge of His revealed Word, and my love relationship with the Lord, that voice begins to overshadow the other voices. His voice holds correction but it is chock-full of love. Reading on, I’ve shared a sample of these three voices.
I’ll never lose weight. I’m just a fat slob. I hate myself. I’m such a failure. I’ve tried so many times before and I just can’t keep it off. I know I need to exercise but when do I have time? I’d have to live at Biggest Loser Ranch and have someone monitor my food and exercise for me to ever lose anything. You know- why try? I think I’ll just give up. I hate being a failure. Besides God loves me just the way I am.
“Look at you! You’re a disgrace to God. Your body is supposed to be the temple of the Holy Spirit. Gluttony is a sin, and it’s evident Jesus hasn’t set you free. You know you’ll conquer this- you’re trapped for the rest of your life. It’s too hard to overcome, so quit trying. In fact, why don’t you grab the rest of that chocolate ice cream, you’ve already blown it so go ahead, eat - it will make you feel better.”
The Voice of Truth
Oh, my dear child. Let me help you overcome this obstacle. Don’t hate yourself. I love you with an everlasting love and I understand you better than you understand yourself. Let me guide you into freedom from this bondage so you can experience life to its fullest. Let’s just take one day at a time and I’ll teach you that true life comes from my Word, not what you eat. I want to fill every empty space you have. I want you to turn to me when you’re tempted. I love you and I am your partner in this life, equipping you to overcome the desires of the flesh and every temptation known to man. I will never leave you or forsake you.
Jesus is incredible! He desires to liberate us from our old selves and expose the lies of the enemy. He promises to equip us with His Word to discern the myriad of voices that run rampant around us. He covenants with us, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Let’s learn to discern and walk in the "Voice of Truth.”
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