Deception

Dictionary.com defines deception as, 'the act of deceiving; the state of being deceived.' Sometimes deception is referred to as propaganda, hypocrisy, lying or spin.

What has fascinated me about deception is two-fold. One, how many times people fall for it. And two, how many times I fall for it.

I am pretty good a sniffing out most types of deception; email scams, internet hoaxs and April fool's jokes. But the kind of deception I do fall for is the kind I think most people fall for. It's when someone who you know and trust turns out to not be who you thought they were. Not only is that often hard to see but even harder to take. If fact most of the times I have gone through a time of denial about what has really happened. I try to find some other logical explanation.

You really want to believe them. You hear their words and are even motivated - at times - by their impassioned speeches and you hope against hope that your gut feeling is wrong and time will prove you wrong. But instead time proves you right and in circumstance after circumstance you see clearly who they really are. The awful truth is that they are who they have revealed to be.

That hurts.

What hurts more and the more awful truth is that they also deceive themselves. They believe that they are in the right and are passionate about being wrong.
Mark Lowry
That reminds me of what Mark Lowry says about a Baptist preacher he once knew...

He may be WRONG but he's never in DOUBT! 

So what do you do when you have been deceived?

Own it first. Own it and admit it. You're angry! You must acknowledge and understand that being angry about it fine. After all the Bible says, 'Be Angry...' , Ephesians 4:46.  Now, don't let that anger lead to sin like plotting revenge,  simply let yourself be angry about it. That is how God made us.

Second, place blame where it is due and part of the blame should land on yourself.  I always accept my part of the blame because I did fall for it, that is part of ownership.   The other part of the blame is on the offending party.  It's perfectly fine to place blame on the one who deceived you, regardless if they ever own up to it or not, they did it and the rest of the blame is theirs.  Now some folks reading this will think that's judging but read on.  Besides you can't do the next step until you identify clearly who is to blame.

Third, forgive. Ouch. Forgive the one who deceived you because (as I mentioned earlier) they are deceived too either by themselves or others.  Forgive them even if they never acknowledge it or ask for forgiveness.

Follow me here, when Jesus was on the cross He (among other things) said, 'Father forgive them (see, identifying who is to blame) for they do not know what they are doing....'  That is point number two and three in reverse order. 'Father forgive them', Jesus was forgiving them for what was happening to Him.  The people hadn't asked for forgiveness!  He simply gave it to them which released Him to complete His task at hand.

When you forgive someone, it really does more for you than them anyway, so do it and be free.

Finally, sometimes even after you own it, place blame and then forgive,  the best thing to do is to simply 'walk away'. If this person continues to deceive or attempts to cause pain in your life then just remove yourself from the danger zone. Why? Because life is just too short to deal with people who lie. Also, that person will have to answer to God for their actions and I have news for you, you aren't Him. Move on.

One more thing. If you have been deceived then others have as well. When they realize it they will be mad, let them. They will be hurt, love them. When they move on, move with them and be a friend.