Sometimes I hate everything. There are days I wake up and think to myself, “Why? Why is there so much suffering? Why is there so much ugliness and hatred in the world?” I hate watching the news. It makes my stomach hurt, and most days I do my best to avoid it.
I know it’s important to be up to date on current events and educate myself on what is going on in the world, but I simply cannot stomach the hatred and violence. Some of my favorite entertainment comes in the form of the children’s cartoons I watch with my one year old son because, while they are obnoxiously politically correct, they are at least (mostly)benign.
I also hate social media. I enjoy seeing pictures of happy babies and family Christmases, but those images are greatly outnumbered by advertisements, political propaganda, and argumentative, mean-spirited memes. I get so tired of all of the mud-slinging. I’m tired of people yelling at each other in BOLD FACED FONT because it makes them feel like they have the moral high ground. I hate internet trolls. Do they really have nothing better to do than put snarky, critical comments on posts just to throw cold water on someone’s thoughts?
And I am so utterly tired of never feeling like I can know the truth. Everything we read online is suspect. Every news station, magazine, and newspaper, online or otherwise, presents the news with an agenda, and we never know the truth of the matter, or so we are told. And yet so many claim to know the absolute truth and to have the upper hand on the situation, political, ethical, religious, or otherwise.
But my question is this, “Where does your truth come from?” Society today claims that truth is dead. Truth is ever-changing, ever-evolving. Truth differs from one person to the next. What is right for you may or may not be right for me.
But why? Why do we think that an ever-evolving standard of truth is sustainable? Why isn’t it apparent that without an absolute standard of truth, the world will continue to disintegrate? Watching the news, never feeling like one can know what is true or right, and seeing the horrible ways in which people treat one another should make it abundantly clear that today’s society knows nothing of the truth.
And this isn’t just a problem of modern times. Truth has always been skewed to fit the agendas of man. Bending the truth to meet the will of any one person always results in catastrophe. It is why the first murder recorded in history took place within the second generation of humanity. One brother didn’t like the truth that was set before him. He didn’t like God’s standard of goodness and truth, so he took matters into his own hands in an attempt to make his truth THE truth. And it failed him miserably (see Genesis 4 for details).
For every ruler in history who has sought his own desires and glory over that of God’s, irreparable damage has been done. Millions of people have died in futile wars, been sold into slavery, abused, raped, mutilated, slandered, bullied, lied, been lied to, have been thrust into power, and denigrated to nothing because someone’s standard of truth swerved from the one true source of truth.
And while we don’t often like it, we know we are wrong. Virtually everyone hates the condition of the world today. We hate the violence we see in the news. We hate the dissension and division between race, class, gender, religion, social class, denomination, ethical standards, and political parties. We hate it because we see the effects of it. We see the downward spiral happening right in front of our eyes.
In our best efforts, we try to pluck the rotten fruit from this monstrous tree before us. We prune and we cut at the thorny branches trying to remove the beast from our world so that we can all get along.
But until we recognize that it is not the fruit or the branches that is the problem we will never make progress. It is not until we cut out the root, take the plant up by its very source of life, that there can be any hope of healing.
We must uproot this false doctrine of fluctuating truth that says what you feel guides how you live. We must cling to the one true standard of truth and let it shine brightly in love. It is only when this one true standard of truth becomes just that, the ultimate standard for everything good and right and true, that we will see healing and hope restored. It is only then that we can hope to see restoration and hope. It is only then that we can truly love our neighbors as ourselves and become servants of men with grace and dignity.
It is a daily battle, my friends. Immerse yourself in the Word of God daily, yield your sword, don your armor, and be prepared for attack because there is nothing Satan, and this world, hates more than the Truth.
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” – John 8:32 NIV
Contributor: Kinsley Smith, MTS, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org