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Rejecting the Truth, Even When It’s True

Photo Credit: Creative Commons – Miss Lola’s Bakehouse

Our family recently attended a surprise 40th birthday for a dear family friend.

There were about 60 of us in total, 40 adults and the rest were children. After the collective “surprise” and dinner, most of the kids went outside to play on an ultra-cool playground that was about 100 yards from the dining hall where the event occurred.

All of us adults remained inside and watched as Rob quickly opened his few gag gifts and cards, while a few of the accomplice moms prepared the sheet cake for serving.

Here’s where it gets interesting.

The Call for Cake

After a little bit of time, three of the girls (including our eight-year old) came back inside and asked when the cake would be served – their timing was impeccable, since the dessert was being cut up and plated.

So the trio told us, “Great, we’ll go tell the other kids.”

After that I lost track of the trio of “cake heralders” as I served coffee, until we were all seated together at the same table.

The entire party laughed, caught up with each other’s latest news and indulged in the sugary confection. By all accounts, the cake was fantastic. So much so, some folks had gone up for second and third servings – soon the cake was gone.

No More Cake Causes Tears

Shortly thereafter several of the preteen boys came bounding back inside asking if it was time for cake. The boys were all literally devastated once they were informed that the cake was all gone, a few of the younger ones were moved to tears.

I asked my daughter and the other two “cake heralders” sitting with us what happened earlier when they went to tell the boys about the dessert being served.

Together the girls choired, “We did tell them…they didn’t believe us. We tried and tried. They laughed at us. They told us, ‘Very funny it’s not being served so soon, you can’t trick us.’ They didn’t believe us and they kept playing on the jungle gym.”

Rejecting the Truth Doesn’t Make It Untrue

And it struck me, how often times many adults similarly reject a message even when it’s the truth. They reject the message based on no reason other than they simply choose NOT to believe.

Ignoring the truth even when it’s true – it’s a little sad when it involves a child and a piece of cake, but it’s a catastrophic tragedy when it involves a child of God and eternity.

Question: Is there a truth you’re rejecting, for no apparent reason?

  • Laura

    >What an simple, yet insightful and powerful story with the thought / question to follow. For the longest time, I chose a place that was both uneventful and scary. I chose the path where I allowed myself to walk away from God, and from church. I did not actively decide to turn my back on God, so much as allow my heart to become lukewarm at best. I began to ignore Him. I chose to believe the lie that I was okay on my own, that I didn't really need to be actively in church. Recently, though, I chose to turn back to Him, to start attending church again (after not being active in any church in over a decade) and to get real with both myself, and with God. I am learning to move forward in the truths that are His word, and with His love. I KNEW of God, His word, love etc…That was truth. Reality. Yet, still I chose to allow the distance / gap to form. Such a scary and dangerous to be at times. I'm so sorry for rambling…but, your statements and question got me thinking.

  • Lisa Stivers

    >Very nicely put….and so true. I don't and never have understood how people cannot or choose not to believe in God and that he sent his Son to save us. Yet these same people can believe in life on other planets or that we evolved from whatever. I cannot wrap my mind around not believing. Maybe it is because of the way we were raised. I cannot even imagine my life without Jesus being the center of it. Where would I be???? Who would I be???? I would be just another lost soul looking everywhere for the truth, looking for the missing part of my life, looking to fill the void that was meant for Christ.

  • Tammy

    >Very well put and powerful message. I don't know how anyone can read this without taking a moment to stop and think.

  • torcon

    >@Tammy, thank you so much for the kind words! I really appreciate the fact that you took the time to read and comment here. Please come back often! Thanks again!

  • http://twitter.com/MyRivendell Bonnie Copeland

    Interesting lesson to pick up from a seemingly innocent little mishap. Thanks for pointing out how we do tend to reject what we don’t want to be the truth. It really makes for a much harder life in the end than if we were to simply accept and deal with it and yet..we persist!

  • Suzanne

    Point well taken, Tor. Unfortunately I’ve been distressed of late at the refusal of seemingly intelligent people to simply reason a matter out. It is especially sad (OK, that’s an understatement) when someone refuses to even consider something as important as eternity but insists their “ideology” is THE way and any other system of thought or faith or whatever, as wrong. How did we get to this place? More importantly, how do we get back to the truth? The only thought I have now is . . . Love. Love conquers all. And perseverance.

    The truth. It’s the same yesterday, today and forever. It’s True North.

  • http://twitter.com/tawneehinton Tawnee Hinton

    Great point! I think its interesting that it is true on many different level. We may reject the truth because we are in denial, that if its true, then it says something profound and maybe not so great about ourselves. We reject the truth because, like in your situation, we see the source as unreliable. Examining our reasons for the rejection is something that we can all learn from I would guess.

  • http://lesdossey.com/ Les Dossey

    Hi Tor,

    Sometimes I want to reject the truth about what God has called me to do.

    Because sometimes it ain’t pretty or it ain’t wrapped the way I’d like it and sometimes the cake tray is empty when I want some cake.

    And it is in those moments that I pause…. and I ask God to remind me, to reassure me, to guide me and then I remember, that it wasn’t always pretty and it wasn’t always wrapped like he wanted it and sometimes the cake tray was empty, as Christ did everything that God called him to do.

    Puts a smile on my face every time.

  • Roy A. Ackerman, PhD, EA

    Ah, yes, is this not the definition of political discourse as it now obtains? Folks reject news and keep searching for the (IMHO, less than credible vendor) that supplies them with the news they wish to hear (and believe).

  • http://randomlychad.com Chad Jones

    How about the truth that God loves me–I mean absolutely loves me down to the soles of my unwashed feet? Do I really believe that? That He loves me so much? Sometimes yes, oftentimes I give assent, but it doesn’t live in my heart like it should.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mullenann Ann Mullen

    People following politics and religion both chose lessons from this simple fable. I hope I would have listened. I love cake. Sorry, I am in a literal mood today.

  • http://twitter.com/FilmCriticOne Mark DC

    The history of mankind is really the history of a struggle with truth. That is true of religion, history, sociology, psychology.

    It’s kind of a harsh truth, but people tend to believe whatever it is that gives them status, and a sense of belonging. But particularly status. The attraction is for the status, and what it takes to get that, we naturally say is our motivation.

    For example, do you really think slave masters in the South of US believed God ordained not just slavery, but the torture of slaves? They said they did, they acted as if they did. My fascination with the Civil War is about how the Southern leaders adjusted. after the war.

    I can give you 400-1000 quotes from Southern leaders going on and on and ON about how slavery was ordained by God. Not “gotcha quotes” taken out of context, but in context quotes of length, duration, and repeated in various ways. But mostly, they acted up it. They said it, and acted accordingly..

    Even the torture of slaves was “intended and known” by God. Painful discipline, wrote Lee himself, was “necessary for their instruction”. Lee backed that up, by the way, as we know now in his slave ledgers, with remarkably harsh discipline of slaves.,

    But how did they act once the war was over? Did any of them stand by their previous statements — like Davis statements about Slavery as the Will of God, and a “Divine Gift”? Just because they lost the war, did God’s gifts change?

    They were shouting this in almost every way possible before the war. IN person, in speeches, even in documents. But the day, literally the DAY after Lee surrendered, you can not find any Southern leader saying even in private letters that God ordained slavery. It’s really a stunning and complete silence on the subject.

    It’s like a memo went out to EVERYONE — hey, slavery is not from God, pass it on.

    You might not know the thousands upon thousands of slave master and slave supporters quotes are about God ordaining slavery, you might have gotten into that subject. But the defense of slavery — and the defense of torture of slaves, is biblical . And it was well known and well quoted at the time. We don’t teach that much now cause it’s very scary stuff.

    But everyone knew it then. So if that was such a basic belief — basic enough that they would buy, sell, whip, basic enough that they would take mothers from children and whip the mother if she resisted — that has to be a very very strong held belief, right? I mean, they would not do that if they did not really really believe slavery was ordained by God, right?

    Wrong. They were never motivated by that “God stuff”. Because the moment Lee surrendered, they never even SAID it again. They kept saying blacks were inferior, they kept saying blacks should have no rights, etc. But never again did they say God ordained slavery. NEVER.

    Not one of them. Not in any private letter. Not in in public book. They were essentially shouting this from the rooftops before. Their entire lives and war and world view were based — they said — on God’s “great moral truth” as VP Stephens said, that God ordained slavery of the inferior races.

    But they stopped all that. Cold. Why? Did God change? Did the bible change? Did the songs they sang at church change? DId the books in their libraires about God ordaining slavery, did they change?

    No. That tells me, they didn’t believe that before, either. You don’t go from a core conviction about enslaving millions of people, to losing a battle, and then just never say that again, if you believed it. If they had still believed that, but did not want to say so publically, they would have written it down in letters.

    No such letters exists,

    They would have written in down in diaries’

    No such diaries exist.

    It’s really amazing — even the most demented person in the US, after Lee surrendered, did not say, ever again, that God ordained slavery and the torture of slaves. NOT EVER. Not in 150 years — no one.

    People will say a lot of crazy things, but that one particular thing, no one has said. Not privately. Not publically, And remember, they were shouting this from the rooftops.

    Lee never said any such thing again. Davis. Toombs. Stephens. Even Debow of Debow’s Review, which essentially bragged that God stopped all opposition to slavery from 1844 on!! Debow’s Review was kinda like the TIME magazine of today for the South. And he brags for years and years and years how slavery was of God. SO did many many people in the South. But after Lee surrendered — go find me any of them, ANY of them, who said slavery was of God. Really. Find me ONE. They all stopped, instantly. There was no internet then, no tweets, they could not possibly communicate with one another so suddenly and completely.

    SO the whole “slavery was from GOd” thing — they never believed anyway.!!!!!!! If they had believed it, they would need to adjust or rebel.
    So why would they enslave bfore? If they really did not believe it, why did they do all that slavery stuff?
    STATUS. Oh they said their God was the God in the bible. Of course they did. Naturally they did. They got status for slavery. Men do not get up on a stump and say “I LOVE STATUS. I want more status. I want the women to notice me, and get a lot of attention and money. Slaves are the best way to do that.”

    No. They said, just as Lee said, Slavery is ordained of God, and it is not up to man to question God.
    That is why it’s important to understand what really motivates. IF we quit accepting each other’s excuses, we might create a better world.
    After Lee surrendered, they could not get STATUS for slaves. The moral compass was never set to God or the bible, That was always excuses. Whether consciously or not, it was excuses. Status is what they cared about.
    And they are like us. We are like them. Status. We all want status. you can pretend you don’t all you want, but the history of the world shows the desire for status is the strongest desire, other than for food, safety, and pleasure. And it is especially strong desire in men.

    • Donovan

      Mark,

      Seems like you put a lot of thought into this. I take it that you are against slavery and I would agree with you on that. Can you give me a quick version of where your personal angle is on this? I want to better understand what your thought process is on this for how to categorize historical events.

      If you mean that thousands of people used the Bible to legitimize slavery and that you are not cool with that–again you and I have another point of agreement. If you think that the Bible does not support slavery–we again would agree on that.

      If you think that the “right thing” to do is to not treat others harshly and that one person should NEVER be able to own another person–we are congruent right down the line.

      Just one question, WHY is it wrong?

      I look forward to the exchange.

      Donovan

  • Donovan

    I thought that I would take a poll to see who wanted to vote on gravity here . . . actually, it does not matter what the result is–gravity is still in effect.

    Same with God’s moral law. It is not up for an up/down vote or even an amendment. No one gets to decrease their moral budget, nor can they rescind the law. It is what it is.

    Free will is a tricky thing. Without it nothing has any influence at all, yet with it you have a whole world of possible badness that people can do to each other. Seems like the Creator knew that and was willing to give man a go. Promptly man screwed it up. Things were bleak. Yet despite of our ruining everything it seems (according to the Biblical record) that God took another step and gave us His son. Humanity saw fit to kill Him. Not one to give up, God decided that suffering with/for/by us was His best way to provide a means for us to (by free will) accept or reject His offer or His truth (if you will). The door was left open for eternal life (surrender) or eternal death for no apparent reason other than you wanted to be in control.