“You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another.”
— Ernest Hemingway (1899–1961)
Everyone faces denial. Life gets too big on us or it is a fact that we cannot face the truth without some time to play in the sandbox, pretending everything is okay.
But then we are ashamed of being in denial. That’s a very unfortunate thing. But it’s a fact of life that that which we are ashamed of is our perennially intermittent condition.
We deny commonly.
Now the only defence we have against the phenomenon of denial that sweeps in unsuspectingly, is the rampantly brutal truth as we go there by faith. The quicker we can ‘fess-up’, the quicker we call denial a liar.
Beyond the Purpose of Denial
Understanding that denial has a role in protecting us against those things we cannot bear, our aim has to be to bear the truth quicker and quicker, and more and more.
The purpose of denial is a good one—in its own right. It seeks to protect us. But unfortunately, it seeks to protect our fear. Therefore, denial is not truly beneficial.
Getting beyond denial is again about truth; not a reticence of truth, but our acceptance of it, and even our willing and enthusiastic receipt of truth.
Seekers of truth will grow in this life, but those who cannot handle the truth will remain in their denial; in their self-designed comfort, which is a fabrication custom-made to maintain a sentimental and ‘safe’ idea of one’s self.
Those blessed most in life have the uncanny way of keeping watch over themselves. They give God constant invitation to search their deeper intent, and when God does so there is revealed much usable information.
Overcoming denial is about receiving the information that God gives us by his special divine revelation, taking it humbly, always within the moment, and turning back toward the truth, disregarding the cost of pride.
There are two necessary ideas of response to denial that come into play:
When we are aware of an issue—in the present case, denial—our spiritual eyebrows are raised. Upon awareness is the prompting for action. Who, in becoming aware, would not act? It takes discernment to reconcile awareness, but then it takes courage, also, to reconcile the act. We need both.
Having become aware, we act, in accord with the truth, and so overcome our denial.
As everybody hurts, everybody denies their hurt, at least initially. Though denial seeks to protect us, it is ultimately damaging. As we become aware and then act, we overcome our denial, facing our truths, and we go on in growth toward blessing.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.