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Perceptions and Truth

 
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Prayer-Soldier
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 6:30 pm    Post subject: Perceptions and Truth Reply with quote

Perceptions and Truth

Scripture:


And the Lord said to Josue: This day have I taken away from you the reproach of Egypt. And the children of Israel abode in Galgal, and they kept the phase on the fourteenth day of the month, at evening, in the plains of Jericho: And they ate on the next day unleavened bread of the corn of the land, and frumenty of the same year. And the manna ceased after they ate of the corn of the land, neither did the children of Israel use that food any more, but they ate of the corn of the present year of the land of Chanaan.
(Joshua 5:9A, 10-12)

If then any be in Christ a new creature, the old things are passed away, behold all things are made new. But all things are of God, who has reconciled us to himself by Christ; and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation. For God indeed was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, not imputing to them their sins; and he has placed in us the word of reconciliation. For Christ therefore we are ambassadors, God as it were exhorting by us. For Christ, we beseech you, be reconciled to God. Him, who knew no sin, he has made sin for us, that we might be made the justice of God in him.
(2 Corinthians 5:17-21)

Now the publicans and sinners drew near unto him to hear him. And the Pharisees and the scribes murmured, saying: This man receives sinners, and eats with them. And he spoke to them this parable, saying:

A certain man had two sons: And the younger of them said to his father: Father, give me the portion of substance that falls to me. And he divided unto them his substance. And not many days after, the younger son, gathering all together, went abroad into a far country: and there wasted his substance, living riotously. And after he had spent all, there came a mighty famine in that country; and he began to be in want. And he went and cleaved to one of the citizens of that country. And he sent him into his farm to feed swine.

And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks the swine did eat; and no man gave unto him. And returning to himself, he said: How many hired servants in the house of my father abound with bread, and I here perish with hunger? I will arise, and will go to my father, and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before you: I am not worthy to be called your son: make me as one of your hired servants. And rising up he came to his father. And when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and was moved with compassion, and running to him fell upon his neck, and kissed him.

And the son said to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before you, I am not now worthy to be called your son. And the father said to his servants: Bring forth quickly the first robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it, and let us eat and make merry: Because this my son was dead, and is come to life again: was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry. Now his elder son was in the field, and when he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard music and dancing:

And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant. And he said to him: Your brother is come, and your father has killed the fatted calf, because he has received him safe. And he was angry, and would not go in. His father therefore coming out began to entreat him. And he answering, said to his father: Behold, for so many years do I serve you, and I have never transgressed your commandment, and yet you have never given me a kid to make merry with my friends: But as soon as this your son is come, who has devoured his substance with harlots, you have killed for him the fatted calf.

But he said to him: Son, you are always with me, and all I have is yours. But it was fit that we should make merry and be glad, for this your brother was dead and is come to life again; he was lost, and is found.

(Luke 15:1-3, 11-32)

Reflection:

Things change for a variety of reasons. In some cases, it is because of resources available and the environment in which they are used. In others, it is because of what we learn and the knowledge we retain. In still others, it is because of agendas; personal, social, and institutional. There are many variables associated with the forces of change which often make it difficult to predict the consequences of change and the influences on our navigation of the paths before us.

There is some change over which we have little to no control, for example the changing ebbs and flow of weather. As we examine the weather, we try to predict the good days and the bad, but there are many times; despite all of our instruments, our knowledge of physics, and the data available; where our predictions miss the mark. No matter what is reported by those who endeavor to forecast, when they miss the mark of truth, it is not because the truth changed, it was because they failed to understand or account for something in their assessment of that which yields truth.

Some will say that truth changes, but truth does not change. It is only our knowledge and perception from which we discern truth which changes and comes largely at the hands of the quality of the data and information available to us. The challenge before us, then, when we cannot know all and see all, is how can we reliably discern truth?

How many times have we turned to what we observe of the world and decide we know all we need to know from which to make our decisions and navigate the course of our lives, only to discover our misperceptions, ignorance, and worldly desires took us in the wrong direction? (cf. Luke 16:19-31) How many times have we discovered the truth was before us, but were distracted from it, were deceived away from it, did not seek to learn it, or did not accept it because of our desires or biases? How many times have we allowed ourselves to be mislead because we closed the eyes and ears of our mind, heart, and soul?

We must rely upon the evidence which surrounds us from which to make our decisions, but what if we cannot clearly see? What if we do not have all the information? Who are we to trust to lead us to the truth when the world appears to be dominated by deception and illusion? Jesus told us that when He went to the Father, He would not leave us alone. He told us, ?The Advocate, the holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name?he will teach you everything and remind you of all that [I] told you.? (John 14:26) He also told us, ?If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always, the Spirit of truth, which the world cannot accept, because it neither sees nor knows it. But you know it, because it remains with you, and will be in you.? (John 14:15-17)

Our effort to learn the truth of God is not one which is accomplished in a few moments. The journey to His truth is one which is life long. In some cases, we will learn from the choices we make. In other cases, we will learn from each other. In any case, we will learn from what God reveals to us, but only if our heart has ears opened to hear and eyes opened to see.

Let us, then, pray the Holy Spirit will guide us. Heaven will celebrate and rejoice as we discover and learn His truth. When we discover the ways we have failed our Creator and turn to Him with a contrite heart for the harms we have caused when we have failed to live according to His desire for us, He will embrace us with the love He has always had for us. Let us, then, go to Him to receive His embrace. Let us lift up our hearts in thanks and praise for His truth, grace, mercy, and forgiveness.

Questions for further reflection:

In what ways does God lead us to improve our situation and enable us in our responsibility to care for ourselves as well as one another?

When we discover we misunderstood the truth of what God asks of us, in what ways do we have the opportunity to correct our perceptions and reconcile ourselves with God?

In what ways do we lift our hearts in thanks and praise for His grace, patience, mercy, and forgiveness?

May the peace and blessings of the Lord be with you always,
Prayer Soldier

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