Having just returned from Beijing, where I was the guest with a corporate association, it is a bit disconcerting to watch NBC’s glossy coverage of the Olympic games, and China in general, and to endure the echo NBC’s coverage is receiving through other media outlets. The network dared not venture off the reservation, and its coverage offered no observation on the obfuscation outside the Olympic village.
Of course, it’s the Year of the Rat.
While in China, I enjoyed major Olympic venues, but I was far more impressed by meetings with several Chinese leaders of underground Christian movements, Chinese entrepreneurs, and other Chinese reformers.
Suffice it to say, I found China to mirror what I anticipated: A great people enslaved under the rule of the tyrannical Red Chinese government—1.329 billion people, in fact, who share none of the rights outlined in our Constitution, which most Americans take for granted.
(Click here to read the rest of this compelling article.)
Personally, I have enjoyed the Olympics, but have noticed that if I went solely by the coverage NBC and other media outlets give, I would never know of the oppression, Christian persecution, and other human rights’ atrocities that plague the Communist China’s government. The scandal surrounding the age of the Chinese gymnasts and their age (or lack thereof) should result in the removal of their considerable number of gold medals (but time will tell if this will prove to be an actuality).
Do We Believe What Is, Or Only What We Wish To Be So?
The lesson here is somewhat clear: we are not strong nor able enough to believe everything that meets the eye. We may approach our TVs and news outlets and believe everything they feed us, although our culture which is growing more skeptical of all things by the seconds seldom does not struggle with this nearly as much. Yet, even the most observant of us can fall under the illusion of something being true because we want it to be so.
Consider the following: I have difficulty with the notion that there are any people on earth who truly commit such crimes and atrocities against humanity as we have heard of the Chinese government. As a result, I don’t want to believe it and find myself looking for any and every newsbit to prove those other reports wrong. We often only process what we want to believe rather than what reality presents.
As a pastor, I see this happen frequently. Some clear teaching from God’s Word is brought out and it is the truth that bears His authority. Yet, too many do not wish it to be so, and thus say that it cannot be so based on a variety of desires, feelings, or notions that have anchored themselves in their psyche. Therefore, many who claim faith say they are “rational” or “balanced” or something similar. They long to be “balanced” because they find some things that make sense while they disregard other things based on their own notions of what is truth. That’s their balance.
Some do not want to present reality because they will be seen for what they are. As for China, they sweat at what Alexander calls the “porcelain facade” being broken or even cracked. Truth cuts through like a hot knife.
What about us? Do we put forth facades to deceive others of even God of where we stand and of who we are at our core? Christ came to give us His Word which serves as follows. Hebrews 4:12-16 says:
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.  And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
 Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.  For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.  Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Christ calls through all pretense. We will either see this now or see it later at the Judgment Seat. So let’s come to Him now with our masks and facades and learn a lesson from China. Perception is not reality. Truth is reality.
Galatians 6:7-8 says:
Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.  For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. (ESV)
(c) 2008, Matthew Perry.