Colorado Life Coach: Is Perception Reality?

Is this forest healthy, or suffering from years of Pine Beetle?


We all have them. Have you heard the term Perception is reality? It’s not really reality, you know. I mean, you might perceive that 2+2=5, but that doesn’t make it so. Some things are just true and we all know it.

Other things aren’t black and white.

Like perceptions.

Maybe you’ve heard stories of witnesses to a crime. They were in the same place at the same time, but remember events differently.


4 kids living in the same home, at the same time, have very different memories of their childhood.

Perception is reality.

Several years ago, Bob and I attended a group for several weeks. We listened to some teaching, followed by an experiential exercise. That particular night, we talked about Moses and the burning bush.

3Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.”

When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!”

And Moses said, “Here I am.”

“Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.”

There was a time in my life when God just plain scared me. I had heard so many stories from friends who said God “had to use a frying pan to get my attention,” or “God will knock you upside the head with a 2 x 4 if you don’t do what he wants.” This God terrified me. I’ve always been anxious and wanted to do well. The thought that I would try to do the right thing and still get nailed if it wasn’t exactly what God wanted made me afraid to get close to him.

My perception was that God was just waiting for me to make a mistake so he could level me.

Back to that night. They asked us to take off our shoes and walk through the sandbox, like God asked Moses to do.


I didn’t see God asking Moses to take off his shoes, feel the sand between his toes, and experience a closeness with God. Here’s what I read,

“What the *^#! are you doing, stupid Moses? Don’t you know I’m holy and you’re not? Get your stinking feet out of my sand. This ground is holy!”

Perception is reality.

For me, I had been so afraid to come close to God because I thought he would wipe me out. Even though my desire was to be close to him and do what he wanted, I thought it would never be enough. Most people in my life lived that way as well. It didn’t matter what your intentions were, you’d never be good enough, but you’d better keep trying.

I took off my shoes and slid my feet into the sand. God met me there. I felt him whisper, “Can you feel me? Just like this sand, I want to be in every part of your life. Let me cover you. Let me surround you. You’re safe here. I’m not going to hurt you, I love you! Wiggle your toes and be free!”

My perception changed that night!

I believe it’s more in line with actual reality. God loves me. He died for me. It’s all about him and the grace he offers to me every day. I’ll never measure up to his standards, but I don’t need too. He doesn’t expect me too. He just wants to love me and have me love him.

That’s all.

What do you think? Is perception reality? How have your perceptions changed through the years?

This post written by Colorado Life Coach, Carrie O’Toole.



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