Depending on the situation, hiding something about yourself can cause problems. Secrets can be a source of anxiety, but which ones are more harmful – conscious or unconscious secrets? Let’s find out how secrets can be harmful, and how prayer can help relieve this stress.
In some cases, a secret may be healthy. For example, if someone shares with you an intimate part of their life, this is a sign of trust. Or maybe you need to make an important decision and require time to process things. Opening up too much or too early might confuse you, so it’s wise to keep to yourself sometimes.
A secret that is totally private and held for a long time can have negative effects. Obvious examples are infidelity in a relationship or the hiding of an addiction. These kinds of secrets separate and isolate us from others, and the destructive effects delay healing and reconciliation.
Even though they are private, the secrets mentioned above are conscious. You know when you are keeping these secrets and you make a willful effort to hide them. Even those these secrets are harmful, at least there is knowledge about them. This knowledge communicates with your conscious mind giving you hope for problem resolution. Other secrets are more dangerous.
Unconscious secrets eat away at your life and relationships since they work unnoticed. It’s like a cancer that goes undetected for a long time until it has spread all through the body.
These secrets are very hard to detect since they often mask themselves as other problems. For example, the secret might be that you feel superior to others, however, the effects show up as impatience or anger. Even though you are aware of anger issues, you might be completely blind to your arrogance. In some cases, facial expressions, tone of voice, or word choices can give subtle clues about the truth. However, things aren’t seen clearly since the exaggerated superficial effects grab everyone’s attention.
The truth can be hidden in very complex ways, such as the apparently timid person who deep down suffers from extreme vanity. In this case, shyness may be a way to avoid admitting that they are actually human after all.
The Devil made me do it
The unconscious secret is truly diabolical. The enemy prefers to operate in hidden ways while causing the most damage possible. Conscious secrets are often heaped in layers upon unconscious secrets, for example, a gambling addiction added to a lack of motivation to cover a secret envy. Like all harmful secrets, unconscious secrets separate and isolate use from others and from God.
How to get free
People can live all their lives as victims to these secret tendencies and desires. Even as conscious secrets are resolved, the hidden ones adopt other masks to hide our true deficiencies. Even Christians might adopt a religious fanaticism to hide their wounds. Modern psychology can help to unmask ourselves, but sometimes the secret is buried so deep that only a supernatural intervention will expose what has escaped years of therapy.
The greatest harm we do to others comes from these secrets that we hide at any cost. This conflict might even cause us to harm ourselves, such as through drugs, risky behavior or even suicide. The more time you spend in God’s presence, the greater you are exposed to his light, which is the light of truth. This light exposes the enemy’s lies that attempt to dominate your life.
As your relationship with God develops, you begin to see yourself as you are, and this is the path to freedom. You begin to identify emotions and reactions more precisely. For example, instead of thinking, “I’m being impatient,” you more correctly think, “I’m being arrogant.” God’s Spirit is the Spirit of Truth; and the Spirit assists you in coming to these realizations.
The goal here is not to suppress your emotions, but instead adopt healthy ways of expression. The key is to develop a clear understanding of what is going on inside of you. God’s goodness is the best way to get there. He will provide situations to teach you about yourself, and also give you solutions.
Jesus said that if we hold to his teachings then we will know the truth and the truth will set us free (John 8:31). The greatest truth that Jesus is God’s Son, and through him we find our salvation.
Lies and deception make you a slave. Ask God to set you free to walk in the light of truth.
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