God hates lies, and so do I. Nothing makes me madder than realizing that someone has lied to me. Why is it then, that with some regularity I not only tell myself lies but also proceed to live as if they are truths? Could it be that lies enable me to do things I know I should not do?
Lie #1: I don’t need a cart. Grocery store shopping carts and I have a long and bitter history. They dislike me intensely, and they prove this by wobbling, skidding, refusing to be turned, making thumping sounds, and jitterbugging across aisles every time I try to use them. Therefore, I resist getting a cart on trips to the store. “After all, I’m getting only a few things,” I reason. Fifteen minutes later, other shoppers chuckle and give a wide berth to the middle-aged woman, her arms laden with boxes, bags, and bottles, a loaf of bread precariously squished between her left shoulder and ear, a bag of rice clutched between her teeth, pushing a gallon of milk with her foot, sheepishly heading toward the checkout. The truth is this: I almost always need a cart.
Lie #2: I will lie down and nap for about 15 minutes. One of my greatest pleasures in life is daytime sleeping. I fantasize about taking afternoon naps the way other people fantasize about owning sports cars or winning the lottery. Invariably, however, when I lie down to nap, I sleep for hours. I go into the deepest level of sleep and then resist getting up as strenuously as I do when my alarm goes off at 6:30 a.m. Setting my oven timer, microwave timer, clothes dryer timer, and cell phone timer does not help. Those annoying blasts, shrieks, whistles and rings only force me to get up and race all over the house slamming down buttons before running back and covering up to sleep for another hour. The truth is this: I take long naps.
Lie #3: I will start some good habits tomorrow. Starting tomorrow I will display a positive, pleasant attitude. I will eat reasonably, exercise faithfully, and clean everything in my house that needs to be cleaned. I will encourage my friends, dispense words of wisdom to my children and grandchildren, honor God and serve humanity. In short, I will be the Proverbs 31 woman in spades. The truth is this: Unless I expend a great amount of effort, I will be the same person tomorrow that I am today.
Investigate the lies that you live by and then challenge them. You will find that each one serves a purpose in your life, but it isn’t a good one. Commit to speaking the truth to yourself about yourself. Lies excuse bad behaviors but the truth can set you free.