Like lemon-scented freshness, honesty clears the heart, it clears the mind, it breaks down barriers and restores relationships.
One of the hardest parts of being a human seems to be speaking truth when it comes to needing help– being honest enough to say, “I cannot do this on my own, I need help.” Or the honesty that it takes when a person has to admit he or she was wrong, “I was wrong, please forgive me.”
Another interesting factor about honesty is that in our vulnerability it also takes courage to speak out. A person cannot hide and be honest at the same time– just look at Adam and Eve. Honesty and secret-keeping are antonyms.
When we are honest, we are exposing the very places we want to protect and keep hidden from pain and hurt. But oh the blessing of speaking truth (in love of course) — no more pain of carrying a burden alone, no more shame that what you have been holding will not be accepted or forgiven.
I think of King David, who thought he had hidden his affair with Bathsheba from everyone. He even had Bathsheba’s husband murdered to keep his secret, but there was one person David forgot. God. God knew anyway. He knew David’s heart, He knew David’s actions before David even went to the rooftop that evening.
When David finally came to God and was honest, there were consequences for sure for the “hidden” sin David committed, but there was also mercy (see 2 Samuel 12 for more of the story).
Honesty will always bring healing and restoration when approached with humility and openness. I like how the writer of Proverbs puts it, An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips (Proverbs 24:26).
Sweet, intimate, and restorative.