The Way We See It
If I have heard it said once, I have heard it said a thousand times, “perception is reality.” And each time I hear it, besides vomiting a little in my mouth, I ask, “Oh, really?”
“All the ways of a man [are] clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits” (Proverbs 16:2).
What is it with man’s twisted view of reality and truth? Where do we get the idea that reality is what we perceive it to be? Is truth really relative to our own perception of the way things are? Just because a person believes something to be true doesn’t make it true, only believed.
Have you ever argued with someone who is color-blind over the color of a tie? Have you ever tried to convince someone dying of thirst that it’s not really water, but a mirage? Have you ever tried to convince a 3-year-old that germs are real and that hands need to be washed before eating? Some people think they know what they see, but they don’t.
Several years ago I was unfortunate enough to transport a bunch of college kids to a sorority party. It was unfortunate because long before some of them ever got on the school bus they had already been drinking.
The place they were going to was up a mountain. About 5 minutes into the trip, about the third or fourth curve, one girl decided to vomit on the window, down the inside wall, and between the seats. It was all liquid, all alcohol, and all nasty.
A few minutes later she felt she was ready to go party some more! I mean, hey, in her eyes she was perfectly clean! The only problem was that we (everyone on the bus) could tell she was soaked…in other words, we weighed the “spirits.”
(FYI, when attempting to be a gentleman, please remember to wear rubber gloves when holding the arm of a drunk college student as she stumbles out of your bus. Just saying.)
God Sees Everything
When it comes to self-perception, reality is what God sees. He not only sees the outside, but the heart is bare before Him. As the proverb says, a man may consider himself clean, which is his own perception of reality, but the Lord knows what’s really going on.
“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart“ (Hebrews 4:12).
It is foolish for men to try to justify their sinful, dirty actions before a holy God. It is foolish to depend on our own perception of what is right and wrong. Our eyes only want to see what makes us look good, not evil.
That is why we need God’s wisdom.