Opinions, Truth, and Identity

July 8, 2021
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A straw poll is an unofficial measure of public opinion. The first known straw poll, which spawned the modern polling industry, was taken in 1824 and showed that Andrew Jack- son would beat John Quincy Adams for the presidency of the United States. In 1936, George Gallup applied more scientific means to polling and correctly predicted Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s presidential victory.

The United States has become so addicted to an opinion that “truth” is now often determined by the majority opinion. Since opinions can change, then what’s perceived as true can change. The net result is instability—nothing can be depended on because everything is subject to the whim of opinion.

In His opening words of the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus declared that only one voice matters—only one voice speaks the truth. That voice is the voice of God our Father. He is the source and the starting point. His words are the words we need to rely on, that we define life by, and through which we understand ourselves.

According to Jesus, God is Father to anyone who has become His child. The truth declared right away in the Lord’s Prayer is that the redeemed have been made sons and daughters of the One who is in heaven.

For those who accept Christ as Lord and Savior, we get to live the benefits of being sons and daughters of the Father. And one of the benefits is the gift of His truth. The opinion polls lose their legitimacy. God’s words take precedence. He becomes our dictionary. What He says about who we are and the world we live in is real. It can be trusted. All contradicting words—all other opinions—are understood as lies. They are not to be considered, not to be received, not to be taken in. They are to be renounced as unreliable and rejected as false.

Embracing who you are in the eyes of your heavenly Father can be challenging and awkward. For however many years, perhaps as long as you’ve been alive, you have seen yourself through the ever-changing lens of others. Unless their opinions of you were grounded in the Lord, then their claims were false. And as your opinion of yourself got thrown in the mix, you most likely arrived at a skewed view of who you are.

Ah, but in the Lord, the truth comes! His words from His throne in heaven shatter the pain, end the drifting, destroy the pride, and bring light to our souls. We can finally stand on solid ground.

In Psalm 139, the psalmist moves rhythmically through a variety of powerful truths about God’s love and presence. He reflects on and receives what God says about him, as seen in the beautiful words in verses 17–18: “How precious are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with You.”

This is the psalmist seeing himself through the eyes of his Creator. This is the psalmist rejecting every word or opinion about him that does not agree with God’s words. This is the psalmist resting in truth. Don’t be afraid to do the same.

For those who are committed to Christ, the truth of the first words of Jesus’s Prayer is that you are a child of God. The Lord’s Prayer is a love prayer between a Father and His children.

This Blog is an excerpt from my book, Brilliant: Unleashing Life Through the Lord’s Prayer. It is available from our website, Trexo.org, and Amazon.

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