It was a dark, stormy night in unfamiliar territory when a twenty-three year old Canadian woman lived my worst nightmare. Once she realized her car had plunged into the frigid dark water, she escaped through a window, swimming 100 feet to shore. Following her GPS, she was misguided and, ultimately, the woman drove into an Ontario bay. At some point in the disastrous series of events, she must’ve asked herself, “How did I get here?” But that’s not life’s most important question.
With her red Toyota gurgling before her eyes, the shivering woman came to an awful reality: she was told a lie and she followed it. To get out of a deceitful destination and a quickly sinking car, she only had to ask a single question: “What’s true?”
Now that I’m sinking, what’s true?
- What she had been told wasn’t true.
- She took a wrong turn that led to a wrong place.
- Her car was sinking.
- She was sinking in her car.
- She needed to climb out.
- She had to swim or drown.
- She had to get help.
Wrong messages lead to wrong destinations.
We’ve all had a moment when we asked, “How did I get here?” As if shocked into awareness by frigid circumstances, we wonder where we went wrong and how to get back. Confused and overcome in a destination we never desired, instinct takes us back looking for explanations and, better yet, a detour. Someone misrepresented you, so your reputation is damaged and you’re overwhelmed. You trusted someone you shouldn’t and now you’re wounded and frightened. You got bad information and made a decision you regret. You gave your all to something and find out it wasn’t what it was made out to be. You’re lonely and feeling forgotten, without anyone to turn to. You looked up to someone who turned out to be a deceiver. How did I get here?
Untrue thoughts lead down roads of emptiness. Each wrong belief takes hold, wrapping it’s tendrils around our minds. One by one, false belief leads us to the next wrong message, until we’re confused and in conflict. No one wants to be there.
Wrong messages lead to wrong destinations. When we find ourselves where we never wanted to be, we only have to ask a single question to get back on track: “What’s true?”
We can’t believe everything that’s said
We’re told to think about what’s true (Philippians 4:8), for it provides clarity and salvation and restoration when we’re overwhelmed by wrong words or beliefs. Truth has a way of correcting a lie and restoring life taken away by the destruction of deceit. The wet Canadian driver learned she can’t always believe in her GPS. Just because someone says something doesn’t make it true.
Wrong messages damage hearts and minds and lives. Some even lead to death. God’s Word is the wholly true, reliable tool for sorting trash from truth (Hebrews 4:12). Mankind has a deceitful heart, meaning we should not believe everything we hear. Truth restores the peace we lost to the lie.
One single question can be our life preserver when we find ourselves being sucked down by the effects of lies that led us astray or into the path of someone else’s destruction. “What’s true?”
Wrong messages lead to wrong destinations that lead to destruction.
Asking life’s most important question
Destruction is a terrible place to be. Once we realize we’re there, we hope there’s time to call out for help and escape disaster. You may be in a place of discouragement, disbelief, unforgiveness, bitterness, or despondence. The Psalmist gives us a simple prayer when we need a detour to restoration. “Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling!” (Psalm 43:3)
Do you have a decision to make? A wrong to right? A burden to let go of? How did you get here?
However you got “here,” you don’t have to stay. Start with life’s most important question. It’s a life changing question. A life giving question. A life guiding question. A life saving question. It changes the place we are now and where we’re going. “What’s true?”
We’ll be so glad we asked.