THE TRUTH IN LOVE OR “CHURCHICALLY-CORRECT”
The Word of God admonishes us to speak the truth in love, but do we really practice doing this to the extent that we ought to in the Body of Christ?
Do we speak the truth in love, or do we opt for giving “churchically-correct” responses.
“Good morning Sister Donna, how are you doing today?
Churchically-correct response: “I’m just fine praise the Lord!”
Truth: I am an emotional basket-case because my marriage is a mess and looks like it will end in divorce.
“Hi Brother Paul, how are things going?”
Churchically-correct response: “Things are going great, God is good!”
Truth: “My business is failing and I’m stressed out because I fear not being able to support my family if it does.”
“Hi Patti. Do you like my new short hair cut?”
Churchically-correct response: “Oh it is beautiful, I love it!”
Truth: “Longer hair really suited her better; this haircut does nothing for her at all.”
“Hi Pauline, Pastor Bob wants to know if you can lead a cell group this summer.”
Churchically-correct response: “Oh sure that will be no problem.”
Truth: “I am mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually exhausted and I really need to use the time to rejuvenate and replenish myself, not to lead a cell group.”
Instead of speaking the truth in love, at times persons in the Body of Christ opt for what I call “churchically-correct” responses, responses that seem easier, seem more acceptable, and that hide or evade the truth.
So why do some Believers opt for “churchically-correct” responses rather than speaking the truth in love?
I believe some common reasons are:
- Not being comfortable expressing the truth to a particular person/persons.
- Not being comfortable expressing the truth at a given time.
- Not trusting the person/persons to hold an issue in confidence.
- Concern that a truthful response may offend the other person/persons.
- Fear of hurting the person/persons feelings.
- Fear of disappointing a person/persons.
- Fear of rejection.
- Fear of conflict.
- Fear of condemnation.
- The desire to protect their spiritual image/reputation.
- Being ashamed of the truth.
- Not knowing how to speak the truth in love.
So what about you?
When faced with a question or a situation that requires your comment or opinion, do you speak the truth in love or opt for a “churchically-correct” response?
Think about it.
Now here’s some truth in love.
Whenever you or I opt for a “churchically-correct” response, we are lying.
Whenever we opt for a response that in our view seems easier and/or more acceptable, yet hides or evades the truth, we are lying.
According to the Word of God, we are to be truthful in our communications with each other.
Ephesians 4:15 states:
“Rather, let our lives lovingly express truth [in all things, speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly]. Enfolded in love, let us grow up in every way and in all things into Him Who is the Head, [even] Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).” (Amplified Bible)
Ephesians 4:25 states:
“Therefore, rejecting all falsity and being done now with it, let everyone express the truth with his neighbor, for we are all parts of one body and members one of another.” (Amplified Bible)
If faced with a situation where you prefer not to disclose your opinion or to comment on a matter, instead of coming up with a “churchically-correct” response/lie, perhaps you can say:-
“No offense, but I really prefer not to speak to that issue right now.”
“I can appreciate that you want my opinion, but truthfully, I’d rather not comment on that situation.”
“I understand your curiosity but honestly, that’s not an issue I would like to get involved with.”
Or if someone asks you how you are doing and you are not okay but do not want to disclose the details of your situation, instead of coming up with a “churchically-correct” response/lie, perhaps you can say:-
“Right now I am really being tested in some areas of my life, please remember me in prayer”
“All is not well but God is faithful”
“I don’t want to get into details at this time but I am really being challenged in my marriage/with my teenage daughter/by a situation in my workplace etc.”
There are many ways to speak the truth in love as opposed to giving a dishonest response.
It may take some time, learning, practice, and definitely commitment, but with the help of the Lord we can grow up in this area.
So, the next time you face a situation that requires a response, remember that as Kingdom Ambassadors and representatives of Christ, we ought to speak the truth in love, to speak it respectfully, politely, clearly, honestly, and for the lasting good of those who hear us.
Copyright © 2011 by Kim, Author of “Unwalled” Blog, All rights reserved.
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