Swimming in Lies

by Anniel2/19/17
My mother decided my older brother and I needed to learn to swim. When I was nine she enrolled us in classes at the local municipal swimming pool, but for some forgotten reason, I attended the first class without my brother. I totally freaked out. Put my face down and blow bubbles in the water? Are you nuts or something? Leave the safety of hanging onto the edge of the pool? Screaming time for sure.

The instructor/lifeguard must have hated me after that first lesson and I was never going back. My mom decided otherwise and dropped both my brother and me off for the second lesson with strict instructions to behave. I got in the water and was reminded, again, by the lifeguard to put my face down and blow bubbles. I began to cry. Then my brother said, “This is just what you’ve always done at Wasatch Plunge, don’t you remember?”

Well then, of course I did, back when I was three or four-years-old and we went swimming with our parents every week. I think maybe that was to make certain we all got a weekly bath since we had no running water.

Now the remembrance gave me courage and all fear left me as I pushed off the three-foot-deep end and swam confidently to the twelve-foot-deep end. I got out and ran to the end of the diving board to jump in and swim to the side. I seem to remember the anger emanating from the lifeguard. I don’t think he ever liked to see me swimming like a fish, and he would have happily let me drown.

When swimming after that I only had one scare. I was swimming in the deep end and for some reason thought,”What am I doing in this deep water?” As my fear grew I began helplessly flailing about and sinking. I finally caught the edge of the pool and gasped as I hung on. I gave myself a good lecture and resumed swimming.

Maybe our minds have built-in fears that we need to fight every day of our lives or we will be undone. How often have you encountered lies that would have limited you had you allowed them to? What do you fear most today? Are your fears based on real issues or on imagination?

All over America it seems that we are all swimming in frightening times and waters, in threats based on who we are and what we believe. Our cultural and political ties are under constant assault, making us afraid to speak up for our rights, for our heritage as Americans, for righteousness itself. For God.

And yet, and yet. . . The liars, the Sharks among us are being exposed every minute of every day. We may hate losing family and friends in the current feeding frenzy. But lose some of them we certainly will, because our nation is spiritually ill.

P.D. James writes truly when she says that people today,

“. . . have stopped believing in heaven, and they’re not afraid of hell.”

So how does anyone reach them? The ones who have decided that hatred and vulgarity in speech pass for thinking. The ones who think flashing their naked butts at the Trump Hotel, or that nudity of any sort makes an intelligent and persuasive political statement.

We face huge issues that transcend fear. Issues that require us to put on the whole armor of God as we enter the fray of battle. To be prepared for our part in the fight for freedom. That armor is described by the Apostle Paul in the New Testament Book of Ephesians, KJV, chapter 6, verses 11-18:

Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand, therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication
in the spirit . . .

This is written in such a martial tone that it might frighten the weak snowflakes who live amongst us. If the tone were different, we might lose sight of the strength of our purpose, and that is to save what is salvageable in our society.

Earlier in Ephesians, Paul wrote beautifully of what our own hearts are to remain capable of during this double-sided battle:

Ephesians 4:31-32: Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, together with all malice: and be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you.

I’m not even certain one has to believe in the Devil or be a confessing Christian to understand the battle we fight. But as I read about the armour required by Paul, I keep seeing that it covers the whole body. There are no chinks in the armour. And the armour is anchored in prayer.

If you can offer but a small prayer, it might give you greater help swimming in lies than you know.

God help us all. • (360 views)

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32 Responses to Swimming in Lies

  1. Timothy Lane says:

    You make an interesting point about the disabling effect fear can have, one notably made previously by the great Union general George H. Thomas. He observed that if you put an ordinary wooden plank a foot above the ground, almost everyone can walk across it without falling. But if you put it a hundred feet above the ground, hardly anyone can walk across it without falling.

    Paul, of course, did not write Ecclesiastes, an Old Testament book written centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ.

    • Anniel says:

      Timothy,

      Of course you are right. I could blame it on a senior moment, but with the chaos around here I have to tell you that I have been writing about Ecclesiastes in another context. In this article it should be Ephesians. At least they both start with E. My face is red. Not for the first time and probably not the last.

      Would you like to come and shovel the snow off our roof? I just asked Bear if this might be one of those years when people go out and find a moose living on their roof. Always interesting.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      For what it’s worth, I have corrected it.

  2. Rosalys says:

    Annie, very true. The fight we have is spiritual, the enemy is Satan.

  3. Annie — I just quoted that same Ephesians passage in the midst of a Facebook discussion. Funny it should pop up here as well. We are in the midst of a supernatural battle but we are to “be still and know that I am God.” The battle is his; we’re just uncomfortably close to the front lines right now. I love your swimming analogy. That’s exactly what it feels like. Nice piece.

  4. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, together with all malice: and be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you.

    The black cauldron of so-called “social media” is not conducive to this quote from Erastus. You will never mistake me for a noodle-spined “can’t we all just get along”-er. I believe in the noble battle of the noble cause. America, as opposed to Amerika, is worth fighting for. And one should never make the mistake of confusing Kumbaya-esque “tolerance” with noble compassion when it is usually just cowardice dressed up.

    Still, there is a lesson to be pulled from Paul’s quote in Erasmus. There is a sphere of social life upstream of politics. We need not flatter anyone’s dogmatic politics or confuse “tolerance” with mere collaboration. But there is still a humanity implicit in people that could be reached and probably ought to at least be acknowledged.

    I may be in error, but I do not believe the Kumbaya Christians are upstream from the politics but are instead floating flatly in those rapids like a flounder. You cannot be upstream of the political backwater by simply doing a belly-flop in the river.

    Can one really back up and gain the perspective of Paul as written in Ecumenical and reach people and relate to them outside of and prior to their likely well-practiced sense of grievance and political mania? Can one do so while not surrendering, while not making the mistake of turning “tolerance” into mere surrender and collaboration?

    Actually, it seems doubtful that this is possible now that people have fallen for the bait of politicizing everything. The once fertile field of American life has been polluted with Leftist politics. And, not to our credit, we have not found a way to counter this disease with anything more than just contrary politics. We get sucked in, taking as a given that there is no higher perspective for any man than politics and, implicitly, feeding all the narrow and narcissistic identities people have attached to themselves like so many bad tattoos.

    Paul’s statement in Empedocles remains extremely challenging. He is implicitly telling us to try to step outside of our narrow games and take a wider view. But when all is grievance, or counter-grievance, that is not so easy to do.

    • Timothy Lane says:

      I suspect that most adult liberals can still get along with opponents. But there are certainly a lot of liberals who willingly believe the Inner Party liars who encourage them to hate and fear anyone who disagrees with them. Note that politicizing every aspect of left is a means of enforcing totalitarianism. I once read that in fact this is one of the complaints those who live in totalitarian societies have about them.

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        Wanna know how deep this stuff goes? I was over visiting my mother at her assisted-living home. I run into some old guy in the elevator and we exchanged pleasantries. I wished him a happy President’s Day and asked him who his favorite president was. Washington, maybe? Just trying to make pleasant conversation.

        Well, the old coot says something like “Anyone but the one we have now.” I just left it at that, wondering in the back of my mind if he perhaps thought Hillary would have been exemplary.

        I no longer believe this “greatest generation” baloney. We’re looking at the very people who let Karl Marx in the front door, if onlly by their inaction.

        Hey, I’m not particularly fond of Trump either. But if you can’t come up with something good to say about a past president, then you are a sick old man (or young man). And I do believe this is a sick country.

    • Anniel says:

      Brad:

      Glad you can make me laugh today. It’s been kind of a lost art around here lately.
      Still trying to decide which E word I’d rank first, but probably “Empedocles.”
      My spell check wanted to change it to “emperor”. Hmmm.

    • Lucia says:

      I believe Paul was talking to believers about their attitudes towards one another and how they sabotage the work of the Holy Spirit and the attractiveness of the Gospel. Unity is for the family of God. We are to help one another attain maturity in Christ, not tear each other apart. Destructiveness is the purpose of the world and should be purged from the church.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        I wouldn’t say that destructiveness is the purpose of the world, though it might be the devil’s purpose (or one of them). It is true that life is a cycle that includes death, even predation.

        • Lucia says:

          I meant to say that destruction of God’s people and the goodness of anything God created is the purpose of the world system which is Satan’s domain. Christ has saved us but Satan’s system still exists until Christ returns. Is that better?

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          Whether destructiveness is the purpose of the world, there can be no doubt that there are the ways of nature and then there are the ways of Christians. In nature, might makes right, the strong dominate the weak, and there is little care for the suffering of others.

          This is almost certainly why any Darwinian or materialist-atheist view of the universe leads to people acting so badly. Man, with no higher goal than to be a mere animal, will act like one. And most animals, to live inside society, need to be in cages.

          One of the problems with modern Christians is that they’re trying to have it both ways. They want the physical luxuries that the world has to offer and then spiritualism itself then becomes but another kind of luxury, in this case an emotional or psychological luxury.

          John 15:19 gives a flavor of the difficulty faced by those whose aspirations rise above living in a cage, the idea that we are in this world but not of this world. Anyone who tries to live a higher and better life (not to be confused with well-advertised sanctimony) will be hated.

          In fact, particularly these days, the goal of “morals,” such as they are, is to legitimize any and all behaviors. The point is self-fulfillment, not self-denial.

          • Timothy Lane says:

            There’s a reason those who don’t restrain themselves are referred to as “carnal”, though that especially seems to be applied to sexual excesses.

  5. pst4usa says:

    Presidents Day, the worst and most worthless holiday in America. I was telling someone that last week and they were taken aback. I told this leftist I was talking with, (they had on an anti Trump tee shirt), since they support and like this holiday then then are honoring Trump and any other president they think are worthless with this day. I said we should go back to Washington’s and Lincoln’s Birthdays, and I won a convert, at least as far as getting rid of this holiday.
    As far as fear, Dennis Prager says all the time, courage is the rarest of the attributes of man and the most necessary for for good to prevail. I am not sure how we as a society grow a spine, I wish that the Church would or could add to that, but some, maybe most, of the leadership has lost its way. They, some Church leaders, have been consumed by the left, the emotional arguments and lies told by the left. They lost their Biblical grounding and just worry about putting butts in the seats and bringing in money.
    Thomas Jefferson once said, in matters of style flow with the current, in matters of principles stand firm like a rock, (paraphrased). That needs to apply to us, but maybe more than anyone else it must apply to pastors. The Greatest Generation did start with courage, but after they returned home, they sure screwed the rest of us by not having the courage to stand up to their kids. Not all of them lacked courage, but the majority surely did.

    • Timothy Lane says:

      Actually, the official name of the federal holiday is Washington’s Birthday. Ironically, it’s never held on his actual birthday, February 22. (The holiday is now always the third Monday in February, which is anytime from the 15th to the 21st. Washington was actual born on February 11, but that was while they still used the Julian calendar. When England and its empire converted to the Gregorian calendar, he updated his birthday.)

      • pst4usa says:

        I thought that the name was changed because of MLK Jr. day. I have always thought the idea that Presidents Day would be a celebration of Carter, FDR or Wilson, just to name a few of the worst ones, was just a slap in the face. Sorry to get off topic.

        • Timothy Lane says:

          I’m not sure why the holiday became commonly called Presidents’ Day instead of Washington’s Birthday. Perhaps it was partly to reflect Lincoln’s Birthday, which used to be a holiday in much of the country. Or perhaps it was because the change to the 3rd Monday in February meant it never actually happened on Washington’s birthday.

      • Rosalys says:

        Thanks, Tim. That is a very welcome piece of news, that the holiday is still officially called Washington’s Birthday. If it is official then that’s what I’m going to call it from now on. I don’t mind honoring The Father of Our Country. He is truly deserving.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Very well said, Pat.

  6. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    Talk about swimming in lies! The link is to an article about that white woman who passed herself off as black and became head of a NAACP chapter before she was found out. The woman is either a colossal liar or mentally ill. You decide.

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/02/26/rachel-dolezal-white-woman-who-identifies-as-black-now-jobless-may-soon-be-homeless.html

    The idiocy of leftist ideology is now bubbling to the top. Everything they disagree with is now, openly, being called a “social construct” and society is an artificial and restricting force. Thus all individual action is infinitely acceptable regardless what society says. This cuts off discussion as far as the left is concerned.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      She’s “trans-black.” And why not? That makes perfect sense. If you can pick your gender, why not your race?

    • Timothy Lane says:

      The interesting thing about the Dolezal case (and I had just read about it on Hot Air right before getting back to this website) is that liberals who believe “gender” is just a matter of how you feel (and who see nothing wrong with Elizabeth Warren aka Fauxcahontas aka Blonde Squaw With Empty Head) reject the idea that Rachel Dolezal can be a black just because she feels that she is. Tucker Carlson recently challenged a transgender advocate on that issue (among others).

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        I read that article about the Tucker Carlson article over at HotAir. Allahpundit writes:

        Carlson’s point is to show that Petkanas’s position, at least as articulated here, is 99 percent echo-chamber posturing and one percent thought through.

        Once again, this proves to me that nothing good came out of the hippie generation. Nothing. What they learned was that opposition itself was the thing. And that’s all that this stupid Democrat operative has. No rhyme or reason.

        What about tie-dye? No. Nothing. Nothing good came from the Flower Power generation. And nothing good (other than hi-tech gadgets) will likely come from the Millennials.

        Of course, Trumpism is fully infected with contrarianism. But give Trump some credit for going after sex traffickers. We’ll have to wait and see what his guiding lite is. Who can really know? I certainly don’t.

        But if one’s feelings or desires are all that it takes to define gender, then why not race? You’ve likely read about that recent case of a girl born as a girl who always (someone…probably because of libtard parents) thought she was a boy and so took testosterone and just won the state championship in girl’s wrestling. I saw a video of it and it looks like a normal well-muscled boy man-handing women who haven’t got a chance. Indeed, they did not. He (she..whatever) won something like 17-0 in her/his matches.

        Perhaps we should resort to an old standby: Everything I needed to know about life I learned from The Brady Bunch. I was doing a little channel surfing today and caught a few moments of the show. Jan, for some reason, was wearing a brunette wig. She didn’t want to be blond anymore. Her father (yikes….a guy who turned out to be a fag) councils her, “Honey, it’s what’s inside that counts.” And, well, I guess that’s good advice for the most part. Changing hair colors is arguably harmless overt fashion — much like changing your shirt — although in the case of Jan, it appears this meant more than fashion to her.

        So what our screwball culture has done has taken “finding yourself” to such an extreme that nobody knows who they are anymore. So we all elevate screwball “feelings” learned from screwball celebrities and such and then wonder why, after having your dick chopped off, someone isn’t happy.

        Jan…stick with your blonde hair. Be yourself. Feed your inner Brady.

        • Timothy Lane says:

          The girl who thinks she’s a boy just became the state wrestling champion. Of course, the testosterone she’s taking didn’t hurt her chances, though it led to complaints. But she’s taking it for a medical reason (converting from girl to boy)which makes it all right.

          Tucker Carlson does a nice job of pressing liberals to defend their lunacies. Most of them are totally lost when he does that. It’s so refreshing. The transgender advocate was an excellent example, and his only “defense” was to complain that such concerns were irrelevant hypothetical fantasies — even though they were based on actual occurrences.

          • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

            I can’t help thinking this girl/boy has child-abuse-like liberal parents. No father would allow his daughter to take testosterone and thereby gain an unfair advantage in a sporting competition. That’s not cricket. And no father would allow their child to act on the pop-culture nonsense picked up on MTV, Facebook, or wherever. You’re a girl. Live with it. We all have to battle our feelings at times. That’s life.

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