A preacher’s wife confession:
I am a liar! I have always been a liar and deserve to be thrown into the fiery lake of burning sulfur for my sins.
What a person desires is unfailing love; better to be poor than a liar. Proverbs 19:22
I don’t know when I told my last lie, nor do I recall what it was about. I assume it was to my husband but really don’t know. My last lie may have been to myself when I promised to stop lying. Or more likely it is when I pretend to know what it is like to have a happy childhood, loving family or be a preacher’s wife.
I lied for too long and about too much to recognize the truth. The truth and I have an anxious love affair. I fear I will always wrestle with truth.
I confess my love for my many lies. I miss the salve of laughter and joy they brought. I really wanted to believe my parents were good. I really wanted to believe they loved me. I wished with all my heart and soul that my sister would become the beautiful, kind, loving and protective big sister I held in my heart. I wanted these to be truths.
Lies kept me alive. Believing them made them believable. It is so hard to put so many of them to rest. They became my companions. I owe them a great deal. And I have no idea the proper way to repay them. I feel like a murderer every time I put one down. I stand before their graves and pay homage to the ways they kept me safe.
I learned to lie to survive. It isn’t an excuse just a reality of an abuse victim. It is the truth to how I survived. It is the truth to how I turned out so well. Lies provided hope to me when I lived in a very dark world. They inspired me to live the life I wanted.
Lies promised God would magically make my dreams come true if I just prayed hard enough, my faith was deep enough and if I just let the bad stuff go and pretend to live the fairy tale.
Happiness is a state of mind! And lies helped me achieve it. Although it may only have been the mask of fear and grief, lies helped me to laugh harder and louder, hoping the truth would be scared away.
I do recall the times I pulled the curtain of lies aside to step into the light. I realize it is shameful to admit the lies far outweigh the times of truth. Yet the truth must start somewhere.
Truth always lags last, limping along on the arm of Time. – Baltasar Gracian
I’m not sure why I pulled the curtain aside the first time because there was no one to save. I guess the pain got so intense after my brother died and the rape I sought a therapist to abandon these truths from the vault hoping to return to the safety of my lies.
Perhaps revealing these truths would bring my brother back to life, give him the will to live and restore my relationship with the other brother whose friends raped me. Magical thinking provided a beautiful briar patch of new lies.
But therapy didn’t work the way I expected. The truth really hurt and I wouldn’t recommend it to the faint of heart. I wasn’t sure I would survive but I did. Dissociation, a close relative of the lies stepped in to help numb the pain as the truth poured out.
The therapist refused to adopt my half-truths and made me take them home to cultivate into truths. While they took up less room than the lies, they weren’t easy to live with. And the truth made it very difficult to return to the den of my perpetrators.
The next time I pulled the curtain aside the truth tore such a huge hole that it couldn’t be mended. My son had gotten caught in the briar patch of dysfunction and needed the truth to set him free. So I peeked out with both children under my arms and began to run.
I’m not sure where I am. I no longer live in darkness. The truth has kept me much safer than any tale I’ve spun but I definitely haven’t been fully reconciled with truth. I’m thankful Truth has never abandoned me and never will. Amen!
If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us. 1 John 1:10