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The Acid Test
Have you ever fudged on your income tax a little bit? It is ironic to me that the IRS finds virtually all mistakes to their favor. They seldom refund more money than was claimed.

In the relational arena, if you were a pastor, you would be amazed, as I am, at the opinions expressed by married couples who are in counseling and having difficulties in their relationship with one another.

If you talk to the two partners separately, you get two totally different stories. These are Christian people who are supposed to put a high premium on the truth. But talk to them separately and you will get two totally different tales; the only way to get at the truth is to get the couple together.

Or maybe someone you have not seen in a long time calls you and you tell them, "Yes, come on over. I'd love to see you." Then you hang up the phone and say, "Man, I don't have time to do this. Why am I doing this? I wanted to work out in the garage. I don't want to see that person." Well, why did you tell him to come over?

Or you are in a meeting at work and you tell someone, "Yes, I'd love to do that for you." You leave the meeting and gripe about what you agreed to do because you really didn't want to do it. You were just trying to be nice.

Or you tell someone, "Whatever you want to do is fine with me." Then he does what he wants to do, and you get upset because it is not what you wanted him to do.

We are desensitized to falsehood. We do not like honest rejection, so we do things we dislike and then grumble about it. Conversely, we manipulate relationships in order to gain what we want by imposing a sense of guilt on someone else.

Hundreds of little things we do are nothing more than propagating falsehood. We wonder why our relationships hang by a thread when, in fact, we are more honest with our dogs and cats than we are with people.

Learn how to communicate truth, and do it in love. It will absolutely transform your relationships.

Admit It, And Quit It
First of all, we must confront the fact that we have a problem in this area. We have to acknowledge the need to focus our attention on the truth and make a deliberate effort to change before it will ever happen.

What is the truth? Truth takes two forms. There is spiritual truth, and there is empirical truth, which is based on observation and experiences.

There is truth that relates to the realm of the unseen; it is spiritual truth regarding issues we cannot confirm through natural reasoning or sensory perception. That spiritual truth originates in the Bible: "God is a spirit and His Word is spirit as well" (John 6:63).

Therefore, to discover spiritual truth, God and His Word have to be the foundation for our search. Anything else you choose to believe has only one other source of origin—the very untrustworthy mind of man.

The Dependable Word
Your choice is pretty clear: either you choose to believe the Word of God, or you choose to believe someone's opinion. I choose the Word of God. It has come to us over thousands of years through the mouths of hundreds of prophets, and it presents a perfect picture of God's plan for man.

It is appropriate for us to engage in mathematics and science and rational thinking as it relates to this universe. God gave us our senses to perceive His creation so we could discern the truth of the natural realm. We are to use our brains for that purpose, not to try to disprove it. But be aware that you cannot use empirical truth to understand the truth which is spiritual.

Spiritual truth will clarify and illuminate empirical truths for us, but empirical truth or natural reasoning will not illuminate things of the Spirit. Why not? Because, as it says in 1 Corinthians 2:14, "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."

So, strive to understand the difference between spiritual and empirical truth, then purpose in your heart to stop propagating falsehood and start communicating the truth in all you say and do.

Source: Positioned for Promotion by Mac Hammond.
Excerpt permission granted by Mac Hammond Ministries.

Author Biography

Mac Hammond
Web site: Mac Hammond
 
Mac Hammond is senior pastor of Living Word Christian Center, a large and growing church in Brooklyn Park (a suburb of Minneapolis), Minnesota. He is the host of the Winner’s Minute, which is seen locally in the Minneapolis area and can also be viewed at winnersminute.com. He is also the host of the Winner’s Way broadcast and author of several internationally distributed books. Mac is broadly acclaimed for his ability to apply the principles of the Bible to practical situations and the challenges of daily living.
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