I learned the importance of honesty one day as I sat across the table from a woman who had decades of marriage under her belt. She had infinite wisdom on the subject, and yet somehow could always relate to my newlywed struggles either by recalling her earlier years or current circumstances.
She asked me a pretty straightforward question about my marriage. I answered with vague sentences, making a point to use words that painted my relationship in the best light possible. Then I tossed the question back to her.
“What about you guys?”
She answered honestly. She told me that this was an area her and her husband had gone through ups and downs in over the years. She also told me that this had turned to resentment in her heart, so they mostly stay away from the subject now. The relief I felt at her honesty was amazing. I was able to go back and tell her that I had not been entirely truthful. I had led her to believe we were doing well in this area for the sake of a show, but in reality, it needed work. And because of her transparency, I was able to be transparent.
When we are putting on a show, there is no room for vulnerability. Most times, encouragement comes when we voice the difficulties we are having. That interaction taught me that as much as we say we want honest conversations, we have a hard time speaking honestly. It is normal to want to show the best sides, especially when it comes to things like our relationships. We want to paint our partner and ourselves in the best light, and it works for a while. When we put on a front, and as we speak, we can convince ourselves that we are doing well. But it only makes us feel good for so long. Soon we begin to feel fake, and the hurt never comes to light.
Honesty is so important.
There is a lot of fear involved with being honest, especially if you have been hurt in the past. James 5:16 says the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and also tells us to confess to one another for healing to take place. Much of the reason for hurt is because we are not wise with who we go to for confession and prayer. Seeking out the righteous, the ones who are genuine, consistent, and God-fearing people. The people we see actively living a life that glorifies God. This is the key.
We live in a world where gossip is the norm, but praying for the Lord to reveal those special people who bear fruit will allow us to be vulnerable without fear. He will come through with accountability and care like we’ve never seen. And once we share our hearts, healing can begin.
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