I have at times said and done things in order  to influence the decisions other people make. 

 I believe the decisions you make can be subject to manipulation without you even being aware of it. I believe if you have imagined something is true when it is not true  it can be very difficult for you to make decisions that lead to life i.e. decision(s) that represent the truth (God).  Therefore one of the ways to help you in life is to help you make decisions that lead to life by removing what you have imagined is true when it is not true. It is to help you know the truth about God.   

If you do not know the truth about God, you can believe a lie about God.   

God has never nor will ever manipulate/ deceive you. 

John 8:44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

When you believe a lie about God, this can make it harder for you to represent God, hurting you and others of you. 

John 10:10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

 When you know God, you will know the truth about God. God would not be Who He Is if He did not want to help you know the truth about Him. 

God  wants you to know Him, even as his Son Jesus Christ knows Him. 

John 17:3 Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.