One sure way to bog oneself down very quickly is to buy into a conspiracy theory. In my lifetime, there have always been a plethora of conspiracy theories from which to choose. Whenever I hear someone sharing a cherished conspiracy theory, I quickly become mentally, emotionally, physically exhausted, and teeter on the precipice of nausea.
In recent blogs, I have been reflecting on this exhortation in Hebrews 12:1, specifically on the phrase which I have emphasized, “Therefore we also, since so great a cloud of witnesses surrounds us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race set before us,”
Laying aside conspiracy theories is a productive weight loss practice.
Laying aside such besetting weights enables us to be present in the “Now” moment. This practice is one of the keys to hearing the voice of God and responding to the leading of the Holy Spirit. One of the helpful tools for this kind of weight loss is mindful meditation.
Conspiracy theorists would like to accuse me of having my head in the sand, of ignoring reality. In fact, I have my head in heaven. I focus on a higher reality. I remind myself of the Apostle Paul’s admonition:
“If you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.” (Colossians 3:1–4)
One way of practicing this “throne” mindset is to meditate on the prophetic declarations of Jesus concerning the Kingdom of God. The New Testament Gospels record these declarations. I believe that whatever Jesus has prophesied will be fulfilled. He is the WORD incarnate. According to Jesus, God destined His Kingdom to increase throughout history triumphantly. His Kingdom will eventually encompass the entire globe and all of humanity. There will be opposition to this growth. No power on earth will stop its growth.
Another way to maintain a heavenly mindset is to reflect on Jesus’ insights about the nature of truth.
“Therefore, do not fear them. For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed and hidden that will not be known.” (Matthew 10:26)
“For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light.” (Mark 4:22)
“For nothing is secret that will not be revealed, nor anything hidden that will not be known and come to light.” (Luke 8:17)
“For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, nor hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the Light, and what you have spoken in the ear in inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops.” (Luke 12:2–3)
Truth triumphs. Light triumphs. Truth and Light expose the plots and deeds of darkness. Conspiracy theorists focus on supposed hidden schemes. Even if the theories are correct, Truth and Light will eventually expose these covert schemes. Rather than becoming preoccupied with these theories, we focus our attention on Jesus. He is Truth and Light personified.
The heavenly mind positions itself to be led by the Holy Spirit. One of my heart-sets is, “Holy Spirit, reveal to me what I need to know NOW!” A heart-set establishes itself through a season of prayer and meditation. Some ask, “How long should I pray for a specific request?” The answer, “Pray until your heart establishes itself in faith for the answer!” God does not just listen to our prayers. He looks at our heart-sets as well. When God looks at my heart, He knows that I am someone who relies on the Holy Spirit to give me pertinent information at the appropriate time.
This heart-set allows me to live in the moment and to be free of angst about things I do not know. Living in the moment with this heart-set encourages me to be aware of what is happening at the moment, the people with whom I cross paths, the information that suddenly comes to my attention. These may be sovereign acts of the Holy Spirit in response to my heart set.
One of the specific gifts of the Spirit that is helpful for those who wish to live weight free “in-the-moment” is the word of knowledge. The Holy Spirit can reveal information to us that has been previously unknown to us. I have experienced this first hand on many occasions. Once, for example, I was participating in corporate prayer in my role as a Senior Pastor. I suddenly saw a vision above the head of one of the participants. I did not say anything to that person at the time. Later, I debriefed with the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit explained the meaning of the vision to me and its interpretation. The marriage partner of that person in the prayer meeting was planning on leaving the marriage for another person. Subsequently, I invited this “wannabe-AWOL-marriage-partner” to visit me in my office. When I shared the vision and interpretation, I was met by the proverbial “deer in the headlight” facial expression. This person confessed their plot. This individual and their fellow “ditch-the-marriage-and-run” co-conspirator had not shared their secret plot with any other human being. How did I discover this conspiracy? It was a word of knowledge from the Holy Spirit.
Many of the conspiracy theories I have heard over the years have something in common. Fear crafts them. Being afraid of something that is not real is a waste of our human resources and is potentially immobilizing. Throughout my lifetime, the world has always been touting something to fear. I remember crouching under my desk in elementary school during a nuclear bomb exercise.
Fear is a healthy and essential human emotion. As with physical pain, fear is a warning signal. As I write, people around the world have isolated themselves in their homes to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The fear of being sick is a normal emotional response. It is not necessary to remain in that state of anxiety. We can do all that is in our control to practice the recommended safeguards. If what we can control does not work, and we fall ill, we have faith in Jesus. He promised that He would never leave us or forsake us.
Conspiracy theories promote unnecessary violence and threats of violence. It is in today’s news. Conspiracy theorists have been threatening Dr. Fauci, the country’s top medical expert on the coronavirus pandemic. Motivated by a conspiracy theory, an engineer in Los Angeles deliberately derailed a train near the recently docked Navy Hospital ship Mercy.