“A shield before me is God who saves the honest heart.” — Psalms 37:11
Having an honest heart can be difficult. The person who knows whether we are being truthful or not is often ourselves, the very one we are attempting to deceive. By this, I mean we can easily dupe or kid ourselves into thinking or believing something because we tell ourselves so resolutely that it is true. And then, we’re not sure what to believe — the voice in our head or the evidence before us.
We can create a truth in our head simply by telling ourselves that what we see or experience is true. Then we believe it by supporting it with all sorts of corroborating details we contend make a convincing story. We can do this when we think someone does not like us, perhaps even an entire group of people. And while we might be right, by accepting this idea, we negate all other possibilities. A group of people of this sort could be co-workers, neighbors, even family members.
When an exclusion or an unkind remark occurs, we are often so far into the story we are telling ourselves that we have lost our way back. We believe we are experiencing more of the same treatment we have already received, and so what’s the use of even trying to help things change and be different?
If you see yourself in this kind of situation, find someone to talk with whom you trust for a clear and unclouded opinion of you and the situation. Share with them what you see and feel and ask for their view of what is happening. Take into account what they have to say.
And then pray to God, asking Him to help you see the situation in a new way, thus bringing perhaps a different outcome to even one encounter with the person or the group thereby helping you begin to build a contradictory story.
Kate Walsh Soucheray is a licensed marriage and family therapist at Christian Heart Counseling at 275 Third St. South in Stillwater and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 651-439-2059 extension 718.