Ever see the movie, “Liar, Liar”? Sure you did. This guy, by a twist of fate, is compelled to tell the truth, no matter what. No white lies, nothing. Sounds laughable. Why’d we laugh? Because we’ve all been there at one time or another. A time when a lie just slips out. Some people couldn’t make one day without lying. Some people lie without even thinking, some without thinking it’s wrong. I once heard a compelling missionary story about the culture of the SAWI Indian tribes. In that culture, treachery and lying are a high value. The more you lie, the more you deceive, the higher the value.
We’ve always taught our kids to tell the truth, no matter how painful. The consequences of lying will probably not be as bad as the consequences of covering it up. We would say and hopefully teach what Proverbs 30:32says, “If you have been foolish and proud, or if you have planned evil, shut your mouth.” In other words, stop lying to others and even yourself! Mark Twainsaid, “When in doubt, tell the truth.”
My wife discovered something rather alarming years ago in our laundry room. The power cord that went to our washing machine was cut in half rather cleanly. What was alarming was that the cord was still plugged into the outlet. This was not something that could happen naturally… if you know what I mean. Something or someone cut it. Now I was pretty sure it wasn’t Janet who did it. And I’m even more confident it wasn’t me. That narrowed it down to our six-year-old son. As a six-year-old, he has already learned the ins and outs of telling the truth. I have to say, he really was a truth teller, remarkable so. But I found some evidence that didn’t look good for him. Close to the washing machine in question was a pair of wire cutters. Now the interesting thing about the wire cutters is it looked as if they had been Arc Welded by some electrical energy. Whatever happened to them, was big, dramatic, and probably spectacular. I can only imagine. the sparks that were experienced by whoever was holding the cutters when the cord was cut. They were lucky not to get arc welded themselves. When I confronted him about the cut power cord and the wire cutters, I was surprised that he denied any involvement in said incident. When I pressed harder, he then told me that he was looking at the power cord and he touched it with his finger and it fell to the ground. Now remember, all the evidence pointed to a catastrophic event. He continued to stick to his story.
I decided to do something that I don’t recommend but I did it. Thankfully I didn’t traumatize him for the rest of his life.
I simply said, if I was Jesus and I was standing across from you like I am right now would you tell Jesus the same story that you told me? The physical expression on his face began to change. His face became flush. His eyes welled up with tears. And then he said I did it!! I’m so sorry but I did it. I don’t know what got in to me. Well, I loved on him, I disciplined him, I loved on him some more. Lesson learned, big lesson learned. Here it is in a nutshell.
IT’S EASIER TO AVOID PROBLEMS THAN TO FACE THEM.
It’s not just our kids, is it? I’ve lived here before, how about you? Avoiders ignore problems and they think they’ll go away or lie to get out of them. Don’t pay attention to a noise under the hood. Don’t pay attention to homework assignments. Don’t pay attention to relationship problems with parents or friends. Here’s the truth – Problems are better solved, faster solved, with less long-term pain if they’re faced early on. The Bible teaches us that problems are inevitable since we live in an imperfect world with imperfect people. The Bible also says that when we have problems, God will provide us with the strength and courage to face our trials and our pain so we can deal with them!
Listen to1 Cor. 10:13,“The only temptation that has come to you is that which everyone has. But you can trust God, who will not permit you to be tempted more than you can stand. But when you are tempted, He will also give you a way to escape so that you will be able to stand it.” So, face your problems, invite God to be your helper and He’ll see you through it.