I am not sure how many of you are familiar with the story of Little Red Riding Hood. If not, let’s just say it has one of the most important lessons in your life journey. The evil character in the story is a hungry wolf who causes Little Red Riding Hood’s grandmother harm and then schemes to eat Little Red Riding Hood.
The wolf outruns Little Red Riding Hood as she walks through the woods and gets to Grandma’s house ahead of her. He disguises himself as her grandmother and while using a fake voice (a lie), the wolf pretends to be the old lady. He intends to fool the young girl and give himself an opportunity to harm her. Fortunately, Little Red Riding Hood escapes his clutches unharmed and spoils his mealtime.
In today’s environment, with all of the colossal, unexpected situations and changes, you will hear lots of voices. Some come from within your inner self (memories). Others come from outward influences like the news, your spouse, your family, and friends. Sadly, many of these voices carry messages that negatively mess with your mind. It only takes a word the size of a popcorn kernel to cause a fierce battle between who you genuinely are and who others say you are.
These voices suggest something is wrong with you, or they bring up your past mistakes to remind you of a screw-up. They blame-shift, causing you to feel guilty, put your self-worth in the garbage can, make you feel like a loser, and paint a vision of a “no way out” of the situation. This can instill fear of the future and the possibility of death.
On the other hand, there is one voice that always builds you up. Here are some biblical examples of people, who were anything but perfect in living their lives, yet were valuable in God’s eyes:
Low self-worth, lacking in faith: God calls him: “A mighty man of valor” (warrior). With divine help, Gideon ends up saving Israel with only a few hundred men against an army of thousands. (Judges 6: 11- 39; 7:1-22)
Shepherd, adulterer, less than perfect father: God calls him: “A man after his own heart.” (I Samuel 13:14); became King of Israel. (2 Samuel 5:3)
Murderer, stutterer, undisciplined temper, fearful: God calls him to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt. (Exodus 3: 10-12)
Prostitute, Canaanite (hated enemies of Israel), liar: God calls her “A woman of faith." (Hebrews: 11:31) Protector of spies sent by Joshua to Jericho to spy out the land for military action; she saves her family from destruction at Jericho; an ancestor of Jesus. Joshua (2:4-21) (Hebrews 11:31)
Since grandmothers can sometimes occupy a place in the minds of children as magical, can you imagine Little Red Riding Hood’s surprise when she enters her grandmother’s house and sees her with big pointed ears and a row of razor-sharp teeth smiling at her? As soon as the wolf, disguised as her grandmother, greets her (fake voice, lie), she senses danger.
Whenever you hear a voice(s) that condemns, blames, puts you down or attacks your self-worth, it is always--yes ALWAYS--a fake (lie) and acts like a loaded weapon, whose purpose is to wound or kill. The authentic, genuine voice of truth encourages, is upbeat, and its companions are optimism and hopefulness.
Any voice that sabotages the checklist of who you really are in God’s eyes and dimishes your value, is fake. You should sense the harm in this type of voice and refuse to let it occupy space in your life.