Are You Interpreting Reality accurately?
 

Interpreters of reality,
    Holy kisses of grace and truth.
    The election was stolen...the election was not stolen. Donald Trump is the persecuted hero-savior of heritage American civilization...Donald Trump is a clinical sociopath conniving to get out of astronomical debt. My spouse is distant because he/she does not want me anymore...my spouse is distant because he/she is stressed from work. I cannot prosper financially because the enemy is attacking me...I cannot prosper financially because of pragmatic reasons I have yet to understand and functionalize. I am still single because I am not good enough for anyone...I am still single because no one is good enough for me. I am so ugly...I am so beautiful. Getting the idea?
    This article is not about politics, or your distant spouse, or money, or romantic life, or looks. This article is about something urgently more important than earthbound issues, but determines our response to earthbound issues: our interpretation of reality. Contemplate the above either-or statements; notice it is difficult or impossible for both statements to be true at the same time. How can the same external facts or circumstances or measurables be interpreted so diametrically different by different people? The answer is not in those facts or circumstances or measurables, but in the microprocessor of one's being, what the Greek New Testament calls the psuche, what the Hebrew Old Testament calls the nephesh, what we in English call the soul, what we in pedagogy call psychology.


Introduction & Prophetic Rebuke to Leaders
 

An enlightening truth I have learned in twenty-nine years of born-again life and twenty-six years of ministry is this: how a person interprets reality has little to do with facts, circumstances, and measurables (10%), but almost everything to do with their psychology (90%). In fact, people will revise and redeploy the facts, circumstances, and measurables to justify what their psychology is forcing them to believe. Remember that last phrase well: "...what their psychology is forcing them to believe."
    Proverbs 23:7 (YLT) says it like this: For as he hath thought in his soul, so [is] he...
    Ephesians 4:11 leaders, we must understand this and minister this. We need to teach the ekklesia how to interpret reality accurately, which means seeing every situation with objective, extraordinary discernment within the framework of Biblical narratives. To see with objective discernment our microprocessor (psychology) must be transformed at the foundations where all those forceful predispositions are coming from--emotional, intellectual, familial, cultural, sociological, theological. The soul must be healed and set free emotionally (the oldest and deepest foundation layer), and, deprogrammed and reprogrammed according to Biblical narratives that will never change. Regarding the total redoing of our soul, James said this (Jas 1:21 YLT): ...be receiving the engrafted word, that is able to save your souls. The Greek word here for "souls" is psuche, which translates into our word psyche, also psychology.
    Many kingdom leaders simply are not doing this. They are telling the ekklesia what to believe about this or that, but almost never slowing down, backing up, and ministering thoroughly to the psuche or nephesh or soul of God's people, and consequently, teaching them to interpret reality accurately for themselves. Heck, many kingdom leaders in the West are not even doing this themselves (addressing their own soul), so of course they cannot minister in this way to others. Peter said Jesus is "the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls" (1Pet 2:25 NKJV). Again, "souls" here is psuche or psyche or psychology.
    Leaders, why are you not joining Jesus in shepherding the psyches of His sheep? Know this: you will be held accountable for every minute you pushed your political wishes on God's sheep when you could have been caring for, healing, nourishing, and saving their psychology from deep pain, sin habits, personal idols, and theological error.


Interpreting Reality Accurately
 

To interpret reality accurately we need objective discernment within the framework of Biblical narratives. What blocks this? What keeps us from being a wheel covered in eyes all around? Our old psychology and its foundations. The following will be brief, so if you want deeper ministry and help on these, once again, I make myself available to you for counseling in accordance with James 5:16 and Proverbs 20:5.


The Emotional (Heart)
 

Beginning in our fetal days and stretching into late childhood, our emotions coalesced into our soul's foundations. What happened to you and around you in this period largely explains who are you today--unless you have undergone a deliberate transformation process at those innermost levels, which few have done. To redo our innermost foundations we have to be like the man "who dug deep and laid a foundation on the rock" (Lk 6:48 NASB). Do not miss Jesus' key words: dug deep and foundation.
 

Interpreting Reality Accurately

    Unless we redo those soulical foundations with the presence, words, healing, and truth of the Lord Jesus, those innermost emotions will distort our understanding of all reality. Instead of objective, extraordinary discernment you will perceive what your foundational emotions are forcing you to perceive.


The Intellectual (Mind)
 

Your mind is a configuration of many pieces of logic, like the various cogs of a machine, that come together to form your decision-making machinery. The problem is, some of these logic cogs are flawed or impaired. Of course we do not realize they are defective until we are disillusioned or reap pain because of them (Ps 32:9), or, a trusted person of insight successfully illuminates them to us (Pr 20:5).
 

Interpreting Reality Accurately

    Every Christian I know says, "We must use the Word of God to renew our mind." Yet many of these same Christians hypocritically cherrypick Scripture, and therefore, only parts of their mind get renewed. For example, politics-obsessed Christians refuse to submit to the truth that not one single New Testament verse commands us to exert energy on politics. They refuse to submit to the Biblical narrative on eschatology, which tells us western civilization will be subsumed into the system and rule of a Mediterranean Antichrist (Rev 13:7). If these elementary Biblical narratives are not allowed to renew our cognitive machinery, how bad will we misunderstand reality?


The Familial
 

As important as family can be, many of our impaired perceptions came from family. Yet, because of a neanderthal tribal feeling of loyalty, we are slow to confront our family tree and the distortions of reality they passed down to us. Not to mention the familiar/family spirits that came with those distortions.
 

Interpreting Reality Accurately

    God gives us the solution to perceptual impairments (and anything else wrong) passed down to us from parents and family trees. He says in Ezekiel 20:18,19 (NIV): I said to their children in the wilderness, “Do not follow the statutes of your parents or keep their laws or defile yourselves with their idols. I am the LORD your God; follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. Get honest about the reality distortions your parents and family tree passed down to you. Repent of it by name. Renounce it and reject it by name in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Then proactively do and keep doing what God said in verse 19: ...follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.


The Cultural & Sociological
 

Every country, and region of a country, has a culture. Those cultures color our interpretations of reality, often in ways subconscious unless you are vigilant and informed psychosocioculturally. Here in America, think of macro sociological forces like individualism, exceptionalism, entitlement, and others. In parts of America, think of subcultural realms like rural versus urban versus suburban, or coastal versus heartland versus rust belt. Culture is not always wrong and ungodly, but neither is it always right and Biblical.
 

Interpreting Reality Accurately

    God's Word says we are not to be conformed to the sociocultural patterns of this world, but to let the Word of God determine our values and logic (Ro 12:2). Again, many Christians agree with this theoretically, but when the moment of truth or moment of crisis comes, a powerful cultural norm rises in them and all of a sudden God's Word is thrown out like dung, or worse, snaked and distorted to justify the cultural norm.


The Theological & Eschatological
 

As I keep saying, many Christians cherrypick the parts of the Bible they want to embrace. This warps their perception of reality because God's Word cannot be chopped up into isolated pieces like this. Consequently, they have partial theologies with a percentage of truth, but not the complete truth and an accurate discernment of reality.
 

Interpreting Reality Accurately

    How you study and understand the Bible will determine how you take in reality. This is especially true of a time period the Word refers to more than any other time in history: the last days and end of all things (eschatology). You may have your one or two subjects you love to study regularly, but that can warp your reality if you are not studying and understanding all of God's Word--from beginning to end, every single book, every major truth, even some of the tiny nuances that clarify major concepts and narratives.


Walking in the Truth
 

2John 1:4 (NASB): I was overjoyed to find some of your children walking in truth...
3John 1:3,4 (NASB): For I was overjoyed when brothers came and testified to your truth, that is, how you are walking in truth. I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth.
    Walking in truth does not simply mean the gospel or spiritual truth. It means walking with God in the very middle of whatever is true or real. Of course that begins with God Himself, the gospel, and Biblical truth, but truth, by its very definition, necessarily includes anything and everything that is reality. How can we walk with God in any and every reality if we are not fully aware of reality because we are misinterpreting reality? Walking in truth requires discerning the truth, and discerning the truth means waging a transformational war on the preeminent thing that distorts perceptual accuracy: your own soul.