Just to be clear, my title comes with a little sarcasm. I wish it didn't, but I am in a hurt place. I am not sure what thoughts are attached to the idea of "deception" here, but thought it would make an interesting discussion.
I have had a rough time within my changing thought. Most of the time I am ok with all of my questions, and not having all of the answers. I also have come to a place of trying to respect others journey's with God, and not judging those connections. Unfortunately, I come from a family with very "exact" understandings of the Bible (there is no other way to read it then the way they read it "It's black and white") I try to avoid discussions at all costs, because it is just not worth it. They are not interested in what I have learned, read, and contemplated. To be honest, I understand where they are coming from, why it is hard for them to be "open" and the fears that drive that. I respect their understandings, and know that God is in their life.
What has hurt me is when discussions arise, I can't defend myself. I tend to stumble over my words, and feel very attacked. I have been flat out told that my "relationship" with God and Jesus is a deception. What I feel God is doing in my life is a lie. Why? Because I differ in thought than they do. If it was just about me, I could probably handle it, but I have children "that I am deceiving". I have been told by some family members that due to my differing ideas, they will now make sure my children "are given the TRUTH".
I have a tough time with the concept of "deception". I have gone through this battle a few times now. The whole thing is a horrible experience for me. When I get upset, I am told that God is trying to "tell me I am wrong". "I just want to believe, what I want to believe...I pick and choose." One thing that occured to me finally was, if "Satan" is deceiving me, why have I grown so much closer to God. I have been in church learning "the Truth" my whole life. Not until I opened up to other thoughts, perceptions, and ideas did my spiritual life bloom. I have encountered so many "moments" I can't explain and sure hope were of God. However, I have been told that I am just going through a "great deception". I have been told my whole life that "people think that they KNOW God", but they really don't. Of course this is based on the "beliefs" that others have had. If it didn't agree with our understanding, "it was wrong" and therefore a deception.
In struggling with this idea, I think to the passage in Mark 9:38 John said to Jesus, “Teacher, we saw someone using your name to cast out demons, but we told him to stop because he wasn’t in our group.” 39 “Don’t stop him!” Jesus said. “No one who performs a miracle in my name will soon be able to speak evil of me. 40 Anyone who is not against us is for us. 41 If anyone gives you even a cup of water because you belong to the Messiah, I tell you the truth, that person will surely be rewarded.
I love God and Jesus. I want my children to love God and Jesus. I believe that no one will ever have the "full picture". The Bible even says so. When I look to Jesus, I do not see all of life's answers. I see that we should live a life of love, non-judgement, compassion, caring for others; the kingdom life. If that is what I hope to reflect in my life, how can that be a deception of "Satan"? Why is "deception" thrown around so much? Why don't we realize the dammage that is done within the accusations and judgements? If anything, I feel "satan" at work within the judgement and accusations more than in my journey. I understand more than ever why people reject Christianity or walk away from churches. I never in my life thought I would get to that point, but recently have felt close to it. If it weren't for the vision of my church, and a place like this to vent I would be gone. I would never turn my back on God, but I could break.
Just curious about your thoughts or experiences. It can be a very lonely, sad place to be, but hearing others opinions and thoughts usually helps.