Lies and Deliverance
I am deeply deceived. Of course, the problem is that I can't clearly see how. I am talking about real deception that hides true reality from me the way that heaven views reality, not other people's ideas about my deception in holding opinions that go counter to what other people hold. My desire is to think and act and operate in the realm of true reality and be in harmony with the principles of heaven – the way things really are. This is where the deception keeps me groping for more light and truth.
The past few weeks I have been experiencing elevated levels of seething anger deep inside of me. It is very familiar anger as it is the same kind of thing I experienced for years while growing up. In fact, it is likely the very same anger because it is still being fueled by the very same lies that have not yet been fully exposed deep in my heart about how God feels about me and about my true worth.
This is not a bad thing, this awareness of anger inside of me. If I take this as an opportunity for healing, for exposure, for correction, for discipling and transformation then it is a sign that God is in fact allowing this seething cesspool of wrath to come closer to my conscious awareness so I can cooperate with His plans to take care of it permanently. But it still makes me feel very uneasy and even stressed because it collides with other lies that control other parts of my life, like worrying about what other people think about me. If they really knew what I was like inside and how ugly and angry I feel much of the time they would not like me. That is a classic, but it also feels very, very true to my heart.
I was reading a list of common lies that we often believe a few days ago in the book about truth and lies that I am reading right now. I was startled to realize that nearly every single lie he listed resonated so strongly with my heart's feelings about reality.
God does not care about me
No one cares about me
Evil is more powerful than good
The best I can hope for is to avoid pain some of the time
I will never be loved the way I need to be
If you really knew me, you wouldn't like me
I am a failure, a mistake, an embarrassment
The author goes on then to list a number of other lies that are typically used as an attempt to deal with the pain that is caused by these first set of lies.
My problems are bigger than anyone else's
Most people have no idea what it is like to be me
Most people are idiots, only a few can see what is going on
I have survived more than most people could handle
My first intuition is almost always right on
My needs take precedence over everything else
I don't need people
As I said, I was stunned to realize that nearly every one of these lies with one or two exceptions resonated very strongly with my heart. Of course my mind has been trained to shoot down most of these ideas with the right answers that Christians are supposed to believe, but I am more interested in coming to real honesty and receiving healing at the heart level, not playing intellectual mind games about what is professedly true or not. It is my own heart that is giving me the most problems, not my lack of proper answers to check off.
I am actually glad to find these lies being exposed in me right now. Not that it makes me feel good about living in deception, but I know that I cannot be relieved of the deep roots of bitterness, rage and animosity toward others until the lies that hold them firmly deep in my heart and that continue to feed the sap of bitterness throughout my system are released and the real truth of Jesus permeates every part of my hurting heart and mind.
A few lines further in this book are the following words that help me have even more perspective.
Lies cannot lead us to the resolution of any of life's problems because they do not correspond to the way things actually work. Consequently, our internal deception becomes self-defeating. The harder we try to live by what we really believe, the worse life becomes. This is what it truly means to be spiritually blind. (The Lies About Truth and The Truth About Lies p.64)
In contrast to this I read this morning about Jesus making His mission statement in the presentation He made in His hometown synagogue that ended up in a murderous uproar against Him. He started out marveling everyone with His gracious words but when He didn't appease their prejudices they snapped and turned against him within a matter of minutes. But nevertheless He continued to stay true to the main focus of why He came to this earth in the first place, to show us the real feelings that God has toward us. And this is how God feels about us.
"The Spirit of the Lord is on Me; because of this He has anointed Me to proclaim the Gospel to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim deliverance to the captives, and new sight to the blind, to set at liberty those having been crushed, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord." (Luke 4:18-19 MKJV)
As I carefully looked through these verses I noticed the main focus words that empower this text so forcefully. It is also helpful to compare different versions and look at the original words to get an even better understanding of the real meaning in here.
Jesus was anointed or empowered primarily to do these things:
Proclaim, preach, declare, openly reveal through words the good news, which is the good news about God – to those who are poor, either in spirit or otherwise
Heal, cure, to make whole the wounded, broken, hurting hearts that have been deeply damaged and lied to and abused
Preach deliverance, forgiveness, liberty to captives, prisoners of war
Recovery of clear sight to those who can't see or have very foggy, impaired vision
Come to give deliverance, forgiveness, liberty to those who are bruised and crushed
To preach, proclaim, publish, make obvious the time of God's approval, acceptance
The more I carefully look through these words and phrases, especially when looking at them in the original language, I find my heart being warmed and filled with hope. I feel and sense the very things needed to address and expose, deal with and displace all of those lies listed before.
These lies are the cause of my own damaged heart that needs healing and restoration
These lies that feel so true to me are the roots that hold me in bondage to fear and continue to inflict pain on me over and over again
These lies guard me as a prisoner of war and prevent me from serving in the army of God
These lies cloud my vision and keep me in spiritual darkness, unable to see true reality clearly
And most of all these lies prevent me from being able to sense God's acceptance and love for me personally
Jesus, I really love the mission statement You used in Your sermon. But much more, I want to experience these things myself. I want You to minister to me personally in the ways You outlined here. And I certainly am more aware now of my need for all of these things You are promising to do. Please heal me, deliver me, restore me, reconcile me and convince my heart of the acceptance that is in Your heart for me. Cause me to be able to receive and believe in Your love for me so that I can join You in spreading the good news about Your Father.