I remember trying to encourage a young believer once by telling him all the great things God thought about him. He nodded his head in agreement, but his eyes were looking downward. I actually reached out and lifted his chin with my hand so that he could at least look me in the eye. “God loves you”, I exclaimed, “and He has forgive your sins!”
He said he believed this, but as soon as I removed my hand his head fell again. Did this man believe what I said? Yes and no. His mind accepted it, but it did not resonate within.
Resonance. If you know anything about music you know that a well-tuned piano or guitar will resonate the same note as a tuning fork. In fact, if you sing a certain note into the body of a guitar or piano the strings that are in tune with that note will respond with the same note. Try it.
However, if you drop that well-tuned piano or guitar a few feet you will find it nearly impossible to find a coherent note in those instruments with a tuning fork. Humanity itself has been dropped more than a few feet. The drop was so great that we call it The Fall, and when fallen humanity comes into contact with God’s salvation truth it is so out of tune that there is no inner response unless the Holy Spirit strikes the chord. To keep the theology and the analogy simple I will call this chord “conviction.”
Even when we as believers agree with our minds we find it difficult for our emotions to be in tune with God’s truth. We still live in unredeemed bodies and in a fallen world, so the tendency of our souls is to resonate with the environment. The only solution is for us to tune our souls with God’s word on a daily basis to the point that the lies and temptations of the world no longer resonate as true. This is no mere exercise because in doing so the Holy Spirit is also at work.
The strongholds of the enemy also produce resonance, a resonant lie. This happens when a whole society or region agrees with one particular lie such as abortion, gay marriage, atheism, etc. To these people God’s truth sounds out of tune, and in fact they use that phrase, “You Christians are out of tune with your antiquated morals.”
The only way to retune society is with truth, and we usually have to do this one string – one person - at a time. The only way to change society is to change people, and the only way to do this is for them to meet their original composer, God.
In order for us to help people return to God our souls need to be in tune with God and not in resonance with the world. Imagine for a moment Lance Armstrong as he cycles to his umpteenth victory of the Tour de France. Just 200 meters before the finish some guy from the crowd yells, “Loser!” Lance hits the brakes, and walks over to argue with the heckler. NOT!
I do not think that an empty lie would resonate in Lance any more than an empty lie should resonate in us such that we quit the race.