As mentioned in Part 1 below, the game show “Truth or Consequences” was an instant hit in 1940 when it originally aired on NBC radio. The host from 1940 -1957, Ralph Edwards, announced one day he would air the program on its 10th anniversary from the first town that renamed itself after the show. Hot Springs, New Mexico won the honor, officially changed its name on March 31, 1950, and the program was broadcast from there the following evening on April 1st. No fooling! The name Truth or Consequences remains the name of the city to this day.
During the show, the host would ask a contestant a bizarre question. If the person didn’t know the answer or would choose not to respond correctly, which many would do intentionally, the consequence was to perform a senseless or embarrassing act that ended with everyone enjoying a good laugh.
Well, life isn’t a game (which you might have heard me say before) and the consequences of our decisions are rarely fun or funny.
Take the person who starts flirting with a co-worker and minimizes the behavior. “It’s innocent.” “It’s no big deal,” that person might rationalize. The person might think it’s fun, it feels good, or, “I’m making someone else feel special in the moment.” Don’t be deceived! It is a big deal and often ends with people getting hurt and families being destroyed. Believing a lie might appear to have some payoffs but huge loses for multiple people can result from one person disregarding truth! Accepting your lie as truth or intentionally ignoring the truth can change your whole perspective and even your core values. It is easy to justify our behaviors or even blame others for them.
Consider the child who grew up with critical parents, an alcoholic dad, a promiscuous mother, use of drugs, a conflictual environment and being compared to a sibling who could do no wrong. Can you begin to image the lies about life, opportunities, or self that has been formed?
Many of the lies we believe come from messages received from others.
Take for example the woman living in an abusive situation and is subjected to demeaning comments and derogatory remarks about her worth. Eventually she concludes it’s true. “No one would want me.” “I’m not beautiful.” “I am unlovable.” They’re lies but she has accepted them as truth. How can she begin to tell herself the truth, and would the truth really set her free?
Yes! The truth of understanding one’s self-worth can set a person free – free to engage in life and relationships with a whole new, healthy perspective and with confidence. No matter what circumstances you came from or the lies you’ve heard even from the well-meaning people in your life, you can discover amazing freedom through truth.
Sometimes people don’t want to face the truth because to do so means accepting responsibility to do something about it, and besides, there might be some benefits to holding onto the lies they’ve come to believe.
For instance, the teen who cheats on an exam and escapes being “found out” and isn’t banned from using the family car or grounded. Maybe your affair is not discovered, or no one notices the money missing from a financial report.
It takes courage to face the lies you’ve believed and to search for truth, and once you know the truth, to take the appropriate action steps to move forward in your life. There is hope! Let me, or someone you trust to tell you the truth, help you today. It just might be the game changer you’ve been longing for and bring greater satisfaction to your life. No fooling!
Truth or Consequences Part 3: The rest of the story. Coming soon!