KNOW THE TRUTH
1. To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32
There are many possible lies that we believe about ourselves that are based on our past experiences, and we may not even be aware that we believe them. Here are some possibilities.
I am worthless because of what I’ve done.
I cannot resist sin and temptation well.
I do not get any credit for what I do.
I will always feel like I do not belong anywhere.
I will always be (shy, insecure, fearful, etc.)
I am valuable because of what I do.
Nothing I do ever works out.
I am just a burden to everyone.
I should have never been born.
I will always be alone.
I am unattractive.
When things go wrong, it is my fault.
None of my dreams will ever come true.
Things in my life will never get any better.
I feel like I am stupid or an idiot.
I am unable to receive love from anyone.
Here are some possible lies that we can believe about other people.
It is very important that I please everyone.
Others believe that I am a burden to them.
If someone hurts me, I need to withdraw from them.
My value is based on others’ opinion of me.
I need to push people away because I know that they will hurt me.
I am all alone, nobody cares about me.
Authority figures will always use me and mistreat me.
I need to wear a mask so people will not reject me.
Here are some possible lies that we can believe about God.
God can’t forgive me because of what I’ve done.
Not even God can help me get out of this mess.
I cannot relax because God would disapprove.
I cannot trust God because He has let me down in the past.
God only values me for what I can do.
God loves other people more than me.
God has forsaken me.
A person that has been sexually violated may believe these lies.
What happened was all my fault.
I am dirty because of what happened.
I am worthless and unimportant.
Things are never going to get any better.
If I tell someone, they will come back and hurt me.
There is no one to protect me.
I will always be damaged because of what has happened.
No one will ever be able to love me.
I should have stopped them.
If we have been raped or molested, we may feel guilt or shame when it was not our fault. However, if we have done wrong and feel guilt or shame, that is a valid feeling. In that case we need to repent and ask for forgiveness.
Each of the above lies are associated with negative emotions. These emotions affect our lives because we feel them, and we probably do not know why we feel the way we do. These feelings may pop up at unusual times and in unusual circumstances. We may have at least a vaguely bad feeling all the time and believe that it is normal. We may have certain bad feelings, like anger or fear, all the time and not understand why, even when things seem to be going pretty well, and there seems to be no logical reason to have them.
When we really believe lies that are so buried that we are not aware of them, these lies distort our view of the world and affect our emotions anyway. Look at some of the lies above and think about what emotions would probably be associated with them.