Who's telling the truth?
Last updated 3/23/2016 at 6:44pm
Have you been watching the political ads or the debates on TV or following election results recently? Better yet, have you been voting?
In the United States, the battles have gone from small skirmishes to major battles, literally destroying candidates. Canada came through a bruising election last fall and the new government is being tested and judged on the campaign promises it made. Now it's the United States' turn and it seems to go on forever.
In each of these arenas, major characters and prime movers and shakers are bound and determined to tell the truth but in many cases, it's only true from their viewpoint or angle.
Who's telling the truth? Some are being called "liars," "con-artists" and "shameful". As far as their opponents are concerned, they can't be telling the truth. And in some cases, they aren't.
We are now in that time of year called Lent which leads up to remembrance of the arrest, trial and violent death of Jesus Christ. As we read and hear the story made famous in the Bible and in films "Passion of the Christ," and "Risen" in theaters now, we will recall that many similar accusations were made against a man who the Bible says was innocent and "did no wrong" for He was innocent [without sin].
In fact, a major player in the whole Passion story was the man known as Pilate. Even though he knew and declared that Jesus was innocent, he gave in to these accusations and threats from large crowds who had gone ravenously mad, screaming for him to hand The Innocent One over to them while setting the real criminal free.
In all of those back-and-forth negotiations, Pilate asked Jesus a most significant question and one that is perhaps more significant today than it was on that fateful day. What is truth?
The Roman governor asked it then and we're still asking it today.
As a writer, I know that fiction is also truth. DiAnn Mills, a bestselling and award-winning author, says it best when she writes on the Splickety Publishing Lightning Blog: "In seeking truth you have to get both sides of a story.
Storytellers understand fiction is truth. We begin in one of three ways:
• A moral or spiritual premise will not leave us alone.
• A character attaches his/herself in our heart with unique traits, strengths, weaknesses, challenges, flaws, and a specific goal.
• A plot sails into our minds, and we search for specific characters to learn and grow from the trials ahead.
Truth is Grand Chief
Mills continues: "Without it, we fail miserably in the arena of entertainment. What reader wants a hero or heroine to sink into the pits of tragedy and never rise again?"
"Good overcomes evil-always. The hero will sacrifice much but their efforts will be rewarded."
"Truth is defined as a belief system that a person holds as a fact or a state of reality. In the world's culture, that is determined by a personal evaluation of a set of circumstances. From life experiences, people form values and priorities."
What does this mean for us as followers of Jesus living in our broken world? It means our story is His story that God's good triumphs overcoming His definition of evil.
In days gone by journalists were taught to always get both sides of every story. Today it seems that there is a trend to get stories out as fast as possible whether or not sources' stories have been thoroughly researched. In the process, truth is often trampled on or left by the wayside.
In Canada, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission interviewed thousands of people and their cases, all to get at the truth of the painful impact of the evil legacy Residential Schools had on First Nations communities over several generations.
The government recently initiated an inquiry into the cases of over 1,200 missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. A report into sexual abuse in the military was also released recently.
We hope and pray that in all these investigations, reporting, and elections, answers will be found and the Truth revealed.