Honesty

There’s something I’ve noticed
     that really seems strange.
When it comes to truth,
     we think there’s a range.
There are bold lies and white lies,
     and “honest to God”.
And all kinds of gray space
     that really seems odd.
Whatever happened
     to yes and to no?
And keeping our word
     wherever we go?

To keep to my word,
     and make sure it’s true.
Should be how I live,
     when I talk with you.
I must be careful
     to weigh every word.
So only the truth,
     is that which is heard.
To make up a story,
     so I don’t look bad.
Will only bring problems,
     the worst that I’ve had.

Image is everything,
     at least we’ve been told.
So we make up a story
     and hope that it’s sold.
Our yes isn’t yes,
     and our no isn’t no.
We consider our image
     and we answer so-so.
We hide the true facts,
     that we don’t want seen.
And tell a new version,
     where the truth is quite lean.

This doesn’t mean
     you should tell all you know.
Some things are private,
     from your mouth should not go.
But that is a story
     for another day.
About speaking the truth,
     this poem will stay.
When we cover up
     the truth with a lie.
Our reputation
     has begun to die.

We must be careful
     that we don’t deceive.
By the impression
     that we try to leave.
We should not have to
     swear this is true.
Our word should be good
     when given to you.
The things that we value
     will carry more weight.
When we are honest
     in all that we state.

So when you are thinking
    that truth can’t be found.
Open the Bible,
     take a good look around.
The truth that is Jesus,
     does show us the way.
And calls us to choose;
     in our speech, there’s no gray.
To be fully honest,
     in word and in deed.
Is a teaching of Jesus
     that we ought to heed.
©

It seems like we live in a time where so many people have lost sight of the value that God places on honesty. In the past I’ve had ministry leaders tell me I’m too honest; that I needed to be more creative with the facts to give people an impression that was different from what was true. It also appears common to play loose with Bible texts to try to prove what we want. As I watched some of that unfold on social media, I spent time with God listening to His voice and He gave me this poem. I pray that it is an encouragement to each of us to live an honest life in our pursuit of God.

In prayer,
Tom

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