means reality… your reality can set you free… or your 'reality' can keep you in bondage.
When we deal with disappointments, hurts, and betrayal – things that cut into our hearts – we are left with scars and memories. Even though we can forgive people for what they have done to us, we innately have a trigger or early warning sign inside of us, which will go off unannounced if we are ever faced with a similar encounter, even with a completely different person or set of circumstances.
Sometimes I’m not sure that’s right and sometimes I’m not sure that’s wrong either. I believe that each person is unique and each person deserves forgiveness and that each person deserves the opportunity to grow and change.
Like many of us, my truth (reality) is that I have been deeply hurt, deeply scarred and deeply betrayed over the course of my life. Some occurrences were due to my own stupidity and others were out of my control completely; they blind-sided me. Those things are part of me, and I use them to grow and be aware for the future.
When opportunities arise, and my early warning system goes off inside me, I need to look at my current reality. It’s the only thing I can look at. I get the opportunity to examine what is going on in front of me. I ask questions within myself, like ‘are the same people involved?’, ‘what’s different this time?’, ‘am I being hyper sensitive?’, ‘what’s really going on here?’, and so on.
If I don’t look at my CURRENT reality, then whenever my trigger goes off, I will end up building walls based on my PAST reality. If I build walls based on the past, I will end up blocking out all the goodness that today brings. Walls not only block out the bad from happening but they block out the good too. They also keep us trapped inside the wall, and the higher and stronger the wall grows, the darker it gets.
Looking at my current reality shows me the truth about the situation AND about me. It is in looking at both of those things that my freedom comes. I predictably see something about me in which to grow in or through, and I also see the situation for what it really is. We can distort the truth by not seeing who we really are.
Our reality is what we believe it to be, but that doesn’t mean it’s true. We can get lost in the circumstances and in the past. We can look in the mirror and not see what is really looking back at us. We can go around thinking everyone is like that one person was, because of how they treated us, instead of giving each person their own opportunity. Indeed, let’s use our own faith for a moment and look at how many people have been turn off of church because of one message they didn’t like, one pastor who didn’t behave properly or just because bad things do happen.
Looking at my current reality (my own heart) keeps me safe from the past, allows good things to come in to my life, keeps bad things from entering my life and allows me the freedom to move forward in my life. Also, as I mature in Christ, I have the awesome opportunity of relying on God’s word and the Holy Spirit’s direction too! Holy Spirit is the ultimate in the 'early warning system' ever!!
Wherever we are in life, our reality is that we are not where we previously were and we are not at our final destination yet. We get to deal with the here and now, with the information we do have, and use it as an opportunity to grow further with wisdom and knowledge. Without growth, without moving forward, without learning from the past, ‘reality’ will keep us in bondage.