How to Identify False Beliefs and Replace Them With God’s Truths {Chapter 13: The Search for Significance}

Dec 14, 2015

Week 13 Focus Verse a


This is the last week of our study of the book The Search for Significance, and honestly, this is the hardest post of this study for me to write. I wish I could gather you all in my living room and show you the video for this lesson. It pulls what we’ve been learning together and makes the process of what McGee calls “The Trip In” so much clearer than just the book alone.

If you have the video, stop reading right now and go watch it. It’s so good! If you’d like to purchase the DVD you can do so here. The $25 is well worth the videos for the whole study, and you’ll benefit from listening to them even after the fact.

At the bottom of this post in the Additional Resources section you’ll find the study guide for this lesson. It makes it easier to understand how to apply all we’ve be learning. You might want to go and look at it or even print it out now before you read the rest of this post.

The point of this whole study has been to learn to identify Satan’s lies, the False beliefs, in our lives and then agree with God on his truths about who we are. To overcome Satan’s lies, we must replace them with God’s truths. Otherwise we’ll be like the man whose evil spirit left only to return with more spirits, and he was worse off than before. You can’t just remove false beliefs, to grow and become healthier, we must replace with God’s truths. {Click to Tweet!}


Let’s see how this looks using McGee’s The Trip in strategy…

Situation→ Beliefs→ Thoughts→ Emotions→ Actions

After identifying the situation, we’ll go backwards to discover the false beliefs.



I have been struggling with trying to get my boys out the door to school in the morning (doesn’t everyone at some point?). I’ve tried time out, extra chores, you name it. Every morning it’s the same frustration, and with my temper, it takes all I have to not yell and make it all worse. One of my son’s fits are the worst of all. He utterly falls apart and won’t move, get shoes on, or anything. He’s just a puddle of tears on the floor. This makes me see red as I’m trying to also get his two other brothers out the door and to school on time.



I often get angry. I make threats for extra chores or timeout if he doesn’t do as he’s asked, but don’t always follow through. Finally, I pick him up and wrestle him into his car seat, while barely keeping myself  from yelling.


Emotions (using The Feeling Wheel)

I feel anger and frustration that he keeps melting down and won’t move. Every. Single. Morning.

Stress and anxiety that we’ll be late for school, and I’ll need to unbuckle all three boys to walk him into the building, instead of just pulling up to the drop off line.



We’re going to be late, and I don’t want the hassle of walking everyone into the school.

This is never going to get any better no matter what I do.

Why can’t he just get his stuff and get out the door nicely?


Identify False Beliefs (at the core of the problem)

I must meet certain standards to feel good about myself. (Fear of failure if we’re late).

This situation is hopeless it won’t change (shame).

Those who fail are unworthy of love and deserved to be condemned (fear of punishment and propensity to punish others–left over from same situation reversed as a kid).


Wow! I wrote this situation out in short form in my workbook earlier, but writing it out longer here makes it easier to already see where I’m going wrong. I bet you can see it, too. After analyzing the situation and identifying the false beliefs at the core of the problem, McGee then asks us to “Confess the above as destructive” and agree with God about the situation.

God, this morning routine is not working. Every morning it the same merry-go-round and I want off. I confess my response to the situation is destructive, sinful, and not helping. I can now clearly see the false beliefs at the heart of the problem. I see how they are affecting my thoughts and actions. They have nothing to do with my son and everything to do with me and my heart. My falling for Satan’s lies and believing them over your truth. Please help me to recognize the false beliefs in the moment and to learn to replace them with your truths. In Jesus name, Amen.


Replace False Beliefs with God’s Truths

Justification: I am completely forgiven and fully pleasing to God (Rom. 5:1-11). I don’t need to fear failing because I have peace with God no matter what.

Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. ~ Rom. 5:1

Regeneration: I am absolutely complete in Christ (Gal. 5:16-24, 2 Cor. 5:17) Change is possible with the Spirit’s help.

So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. ~ Gal. 5:16

This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! ~ 2 Cor. 5:17

Propitiation: I am deeply loved by God and need to pass that same love on to those around me

(Rom. 8:1-8; 1 John 4:9-11). I don’t need to fear punishment or pass it on to others.

So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death. ~ Rom. 8:1-2

God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. ~ 1 John 4:9-11


Godly Thoughts

Even if I need to walk everyone into school, it will be okay. I don’t need to feel like I’ve failed.

Change is possible with a Spirit led, calm reaction to the situation.

Even if he struggles with getting his stuff out the door in the calm manner, I don’t need to fear punishment or pass condemnation on to him. A loving response will help most in the end.


Godly Emotions

Proud and successful that I’m beginning to handle myself better.

Peaceful, content, and relaxed. With consistent, calm, discipline this situation will get better.


Godly Actions

I can use calm words instead of frustration.

I can choose to use Love and Logic ideas like encouraging the fit. Telling him he can surely “do better.” If he’s going to throw a fit, he should really throw a good one.

I could also act silly to snap him out of it.

I need to make sure I plan extra time into our mornings for a while until he gets his fits under control.


An Ending

This is the end result we’re after. If we continue to believe Satan’s lies, then change isn’t possible. Things may even get worse. If we begin to apply God’s truths then at least our own thoughts and action will change, and hopefully, our renewed perspective will affect those around us, too.

Thank you so much for joining me for our study of The Search for Significance over the last few months! I hope you have grown a lot through this study and will see change is possible as you begin applying God’s truths to your life.

Let’s grow together: This week I’m going to work on staying calm in the mornings and applying God’s truths I’ve learned here to our morning routine. What situation can you take “The Trip In” with this week and begin to apply God’s truths to your life?


Additional Resources:

Chapter 13 The Search for Significance Study Guide


The Search for Significance Study PlanWeek 13 Apply


Don’t forget! We also have a drawing going on for those who finish this study. Once you finish just comment with “I finished!” and your name will be added to the drawing for one of these books and a package of Kona coffee. Yum! 

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