Truth be Told

From the time I was very young, my parents were pretty adamant about a few things. Possibly top on their list was the golden rule of never lying. In fact, like many other parents, they claimed that telling the truth even when in dire straits would result in a lesser consequence than just an out and out lie. I’ll be frank here ~ I tested that theory once or twice and it didn’t work out so well. Therefore, lying became relatively easy with my parents as a teenager. As a matter of fact, I don’t think they particularly minded the lies because it was generally a lot less effort for them than dealing with the truth. Here’s the crowning blow, though ~ guess who paid the price in the end? Hint: it wasn’t my parents.

I’m sure that’s why I was so intolerable of lies from my kids. First of all, I was pretty good at seeing through a poorly executed fib and secondly, I really did stand by what I said. The truth IS always better than a lie…no matter what. That said, they really had little reason to fabricate. I’m not saying my two angels never told a mistruth; I’m sure they have. However, generally speaking, I’d say they took their lumps and told the truth. I was going to dig until I found the truth out anyway ~ not so much for my own satisfaction ~ more to preserve their integrity. I always wanted my children to be able to say “You have my word” and it have substance behind it.

When a lie is told, it is almost inevitable that another one will need to be told to cover for the first…and so on and so on like an Herbal Essence commercial. Once that steamroller gets going, it’s nearly impossible to stop. If you’ve ever been lied to by someone that you respected, you know that feeling of utter disappointment and despair. The inner pleading of, “Please just tell me the truth…”

I’m not writing today because I’ve been lied to, fortunately. I’m writing because someone I hold very dear used to lie to me very easily; often and without remorse. Far more heartbreaking than the offense was the dishonesty.  Today, though, this person walks in clarity where there was fog and calm where there was agitation. Why? Because the lies took a toll and changed who they were for a time.

So we all agree that lying isn’t great for the liar or for the recipient of the lie. Why, then, are there so many lies being told out there? Out there in society, out there in the media, out there on college campuses, etc? It frustrates me. Lying is so mainstream.  It’s harder and harder to find the truth. Do you know what the bible has to say about liars and deceivers?

“But the king will rejoice in God; all who swear by God will glory in him, while the mouths of liars will be silenced.”    Psalm 63:11

“A wicked person listens to deceitful lips; a liar pays attention to a destructive tongue.”  Proverbs 17:4

“What a person desires is unfailing love ; better to be poor than a liar.”  Proverbs 19:22

“For the LORD your God detests anyone who does these things, anyone who deals dishonestly.”  Deuteronomy 25:16

“The righteous detest the dishonest; the wicked detest the upright.”  Proverbs 29:27

Truth be told. Can you even imagine it…a world of pure honesty? If not, can you even imagine a family of pure honesty? It could start with you. It could start with me.