In the Scriptures it is written that falsehood is from the evil one, and that He is the “Father of Lies” (John 8:44), while God is truth, for He Himself says, “I am the way, the truth and the life.” (John 14:6). Thus you see from whom we estranged ourselves and to whom we are united by a lie. So then, if we really want to be saved, we must love truth with our whole hearts and guard ourselves from all falsehood. There are three different types of lies: in thought, in word, and in life itself. A man lies in thought when he accepts as true his own imaginations, that is his vain despite of his neighbor. Such a one, when he sees that someone is conversing with his neighbor, makes his own estimation and says, “They are talking about me.” If someone say a word, he considers that it was said to grieve him. Never believe your own guesses and interpretations, for a crooked measurement makes even the straight to be crooked. Human opinion is false and harms those who are given to it. The one who sins in word is one who, for example, when out of despondency he has not gotten up for the service, does not say, “Forgive me, I was too lazy to get up,” but says, “I had a fever, I had too much work, I hadn’t the strength to get up, I was sick,” and says ten false statements, rather than make a single prostration and be humbled. And if he should be rebuked in such a situation, he changes his words and argues, in order not to be rebuked. One who lies by his life is one who, if he is defiled, pretends to be chaste, or if he is avaricious, praises almsgiving, or if he is proud praises humility. Thus, in order to escape falsehood and be delivered from the part of the evil one, let us strive to appropriate truth, in order to have union with God.
~ St. Abba Dorotheos
As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God? My tears have been my food day and night, while they say to me all the day long, “Where is your God?” These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise, a multitude keeping festival. Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation and my God. My soul is cast down within me; therefore I remember you from the land of Jordan and of Hermon, from Mount Mizar. Deep calls to deep at the roar of Your waterfalls; all Your breakers and Your waves have gone over me. By day the LORD commands His steadfast love, and at night His song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life. I say to God, my Rock: “Why have You forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?” As with a deadly wound in my bones, my adversaries taunt me, while they say to me all the day long, “Where is your God?” Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my Salvation and my God.
~ Psalm 42
Oh beloved, it is true.
We, each of us, are totally broken – apart from Christ. We will lie to ourselves about so many things. And, in our lying to ourselves, we can truly find that the lies are not contained. They spill out onto others The saddest part of all of this, is that we can feel so righteous in coming against someone else, when we see things in THEM, that we think are wrong. This fool of a writer has done it. And so have you.
The thing that does come, though, in coming to know the Truth, is that we find a whole new level of freedom to simply do the right thing. And, we don’t worry about what others are doing – we worry rather about who they are, and how they are doing in their lives.
Recently though, I have found out that a former employer has chosen to believe a number of things about me. However, instead of communicating with me – and working to smooth out a few of the many wrinkles in my life – they chose to send this information, back-channel, to my new employer.
Said more simply: my former boss anonymously torpedoed my career in China.
Can we see it?
The problem with not being straight with people, is that it is so much easier to simply tell someone else about the problem, and seed the issue with a little (or a lot) of extra-special sauce. If we can convince someone else that the person on trial is somehow a “bad guy” then we actually begin to feel righteous about the lies brewing in our souls.
Anyway, the former boss sent a few salvos, which the new boss then used in a tough situation to validate their decision to let myself and my beloved wife go from our jobs. We are two imperfect servants. But the charges against us (mostly me) were never even read out. We were simply executed summarily in the office of the person in charge.
But the problem with lies, is that they always grow and twist around like brambles. So, the original lie that started with a former boss spilled out across an even bigger canvas. I was clearly told that I was not being let go for “cause” and even given a fairly large severance package. However, the truth is that I was being moved aside. And, though my wife was assured that it was her job that was mission-critical (and that they were oh-so-sorry to let her go) – the truth was that her job was also being down-sized.
However, once lies get going, they are harder to contain. So, in an effort for the new boss to validate their decision, and to be “fair” and “accurate,” they sent the entire load of stuff (fortified with their own) out to the entire consortium of locations where we do business. And, even though I had been assured that I was welcome and qualified, the truth was that my applications and resumes were received dead on arrival; the news of my supposed stench had reached the desks of prospective future bosses just as they read my applications.
And not once was I ever told what the negative stuff was.
Where is this going? My hope is that you can see it. Lies are so destructive. They grow into such fetid things that people actually believe they are being righteous when they come against you, wielding them; twisted on their own axis.
So, are you tempted to put a little drop of poison in someone’s ear – or inbox? Don’t. It will grow into a monster that may tear somebody apart. Tonight is your night. Hope in G_d, not in your ability to anonymously ‘share’ something about somebody.
Falsehood – and only falsehood – separates us from God … False thoughts, false words, false feelings, false desires – Behold the aggregate of lies that leads us to non-being, illusion, and rejection of God.
~St. Nicholas of Serbia