Truth is hard to come by right now.
Because information is prevalent, because sources are so pervasive, because opinions are so pronounced, who’s to say what’s really true and what’s not? There’s this version by so-and-so and that version by what’s-his-name and in the end we are all just clamoring for someone to tell us what’s really, actually, genuinely, truly true.
We can’t trust the culture to tell us the truth because that version of the truth is colored with the latest trends.
We can’t trust others to tell us the truth because they are too worried they’ll hurt our feelings or that we won’t like them any more.
We can’t even trust ourselves to tell us the truth because we know the minute we start telling ourselves the truth it will begin to cost us something.
My kingdom for something actually, completely true.
Says King Jesus: “Sanctify them by the truth; Your Word is truth” (John 17:17).
We can trust God to tell us the truth, and that is a truly wonderful thing. In a world of half-truths, mostly-truths, and non-truths, we have a Word of truth at our fingertips. We have a God who loves us too much not to be honest with us.
Though wonderful, this is also a belief we must fight for, and I don’t mean in this case fighting in the public square. I mean fighting in our own hearts. We must each approach the Bible, on a daily basis, asking the question of whether or not we truly believe God is telling us the truth. The answer to that question is really the answer to the question of what comes next in our response.
Of course, this also has implications for the way we do ministry in our groups. We must be committed to telling one another the truth, even when that truth is difficult to speak and even more difficult to hear. We must do this because we love each other, and we love each other in the same truthful kind of way God loves us.
Will we read and speak and obey, even if it’s a costly obedience? We will do exactly that if indeed we believe God is telling us the truth. That means, uncomfortably, that our standard of obedience is reflective of something more than our willpower; it’s reflective of whether we believe our God to be honest or a liar.
Michael Kelley lives in Nashville, TN, with his wife, Jana, and three children: Joshua (10), Andi (7), and Christian (5). He serves as Director of Groups Ministry for Lifeway Christian Resources. As a communicator, Michael speaks across the country at churches, conferences, and retreats and is the author of Wednesdays Were Pretty Normal: A Boy, Cancer, and God; Transformational Discipleship; and Boring: Finding an Extraordinary God in an Ordinary Life. Find him on Twitter: @_MichaelKelley.