Tag Archives: fake

Faith Like A Fake Truffle?

Thievery, knockoffs, and sabatoge…welcome to the treacherous world of truffles. It is, truly, a shady business.

Of course, truffles grow 3 feet under ground in forested areas, so it has always been “shady.” But something truly shady is going on – fake truffles! And they are causing a stir.

Truffles are big business. Italian truffles fetch around $3,000 per pound. Some White Truffles recently went for $120,000 at auction!

But the truffle industry is facing its biggest challenge ever – Chinese knockoffs. You see, Chinese truffles don’t really have a smell or taste so they aren’t worth much. But Chinese farmers have learned a trick to cash in on the truffle craze – mix their truffles in with expensive Italian ones!

First, they artificially color the truffles. Then, they place them in with the more pungent Italian truffles. That way, they take on the look, smell, and flavor of the expensive truffles.

On close examination, fakes are discovered. But often it is too late. Buyers pay big money only to be duped by the counterfeits.

I can’t help but think of a parable Jesus told about wheat and tares growing next to each other (Matthew 13:24-20). The workers wanted to pull up the tares, but they would have torn up wheat as well. Rather, the master said to wait until both were fully grown; then they could easily separate them.

Just by hanging out at church,  “Christians” might seem authentic. Read about Simon the sorcerer in Acts 8 for a good example. They may sound Christian, act Christian, and look Christian.

But a more thorough examination is coming. And counterfeit Christians can’t hide among true disciples on that day. You can’t “fake it till you make it” with God.

No Christian is more valuable than another. There are no lesser Christians who will squeak into heaven. There are no fake Christians who will sneak into heaven either.

Only those who are truly known by Christ will enter into the Kingdom. Each of us should examine ourselves and ask, “Is my faith authentic? Or am I just hiding among Christians, hoping to blend in?”

Is Your Relationship A Publicity Stunt?

swift-hiddHas Taylor Swift finally found love? Is Tom Hiddleston off the market? The inquiring minds of the Internet want to know…and they aren’t happy! Why? Internet fans think the whole relationship is just a publicity stunt!

Now, I can’t imagine that Taylor Swift or Tom Hiddleston need more press. But, I suppose that even famous people can be dissatisfied when fan numbers aren’t peaking. So, is it possible that the love interest between these mega-stars is staged? Possibly. But Hiddleston’s producer and Swift’s friends have taken to social media to reject that idea. They say it is for real.

To be frank, this is a problem most of us will never face. Most people will never be asked, “Are you just going out with that person to increase your brand or marketing efforts?” Yet, I suppose, that in smaller ways, many people do go out with each other as an outward show rather than as an inward feeling.

The same is true of our relationship with God. In fact, dating God as a publicity stunt is probably one of the oldest versions of the Swift-Hiddleston conundrum. Is your union with God real? Or is it just for show?

In 2 Corinthians 13:5, Paul said, “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you– unless indeed you fail the test?” Many people fail the relationship test. They just want to “be seen” with God. They think it is good for their business or friendships. They think that pretending to be with God is a great publicity stunt.

On the contrary, feigning affection for God isn’t appropriate, in any form. There is no faking it with God. Otherwise, our faith is just a publicity stunt for earthly fans.

God knows our hearts. He wants us to be a spiritual bride, giving ourselves completely and for the right reasons (Rev 19:7, Ephesians 5:22-33). When we are His, we are His completely, for real…and for the right reason – as an expression of our true love.

Catfish Get Caught Too

According to the Urban Dictionary definition, a “Catfish” is someone who pretends “to be someone they’re not using, Facebook or other social media to create false identities, particularly to pursue deceptive online romances.” Online dating has become such a big thing that the term, “Catfish,” has even led to an MTV show by that name. This show brings online relationships together to see if the people are what they actually claimed to be (spoiler: they usually aren’t).

Th term “Catfish,” has gone viral due to the Manti Te’o hoax. If you haven’t heard of the Te’o hoax, just do a simple Google search or tune in to a sports news channel. You will get inundated with stories about the Notre Dame player and Heisman trophy runner-up. Millions of people were inspired by the story of his girlfriend of several years who died of leukemia. The problem? She never existed. Te’o was apparently the victim of a “catfish” conspiracy. The players are unfolding like a Shakespearean drama. The cast includes: a girlfriend who never existed; a girl who was the voice of the fake girlfriend who now wants an actual relationship with Te’o; a 23 year old whose picture was taken without her knowledge to be the face of the fake girlfriend; a couple of men who texted Te’o from time to time acting as brothers or friends of his fake girlfriend; a 9 year old girl who texted Te’o as the girlfriend, and the man who allegedly masterminded the whole thing…a “Christian” singer and “The Voice” contestant.

As Sir Walter Scott wrote, “what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!” Every one of us has a desire to be seen as something better than what we actually are. We don’t want our spots and blemishes presented to the world. Often times, this desire causes us to create different personas: the ‘me’ I am at work, home, church, online, and in my most private moments. But our Creator knows who we are all the time. He knows our heart, and we will be judged by who we truly are and what we have truly done – both in public and in private. The child of God must never go, “Catfish,” pretending to be someone we aren’t. We must always strive to be the same in public as in private. We must not present one face at church and then turn into someone else at work and home. The face we are presenting to the world is not our own; we were bought at a price.

Give that some thought next time you start to embellish who you are. God loves us despite knowing every fault and flaw. Psalm 136:23 honors God as “the One who remembered us in our low estate, [yet] His love endures forever.”  Isn’t it easier to tell the truth and avoid getting tangled in a web of deceit? Even catfish get caught in the Master Fisherman’s web of judgment.