Years ago I met this young man named Tyler Normand. Technically, I was employed to help shape him into becoming more like Christ. Oddly enough, he’s helped shape me into becoming more like Christ as well.
But one thing seemed to be more difficult to Tyler than anything else, and I bet you struggle with it too:
Tyler sat in my office last week, sharing with me about his life journey over the last few years, and after talking with him about honesty and transparency, I knew you needed to hear about it.
Before I even begin to express the importance of honesty, let me be honest. The concept of honesty is one that I have struggled with for years. What began as those “white lies” in order to impress friends in middle school soon grew to more than I could handle. At first, I thought I could begin and then balance the one or two lies I told people in an attempt to fit in, and to those people I was this person they believed me to be. So eventually, when it came time to back-up my lies, I had to then manipulate the rest of my relationships with more lies. My true friends would get excuses as to why I could not hang with them and my mother got bold face lies about where I was going. My life eventually transformed from a one in a million opportunity to be myself and who God made me to be into a show, where the audience thought it was real and I had it all together. One look backstage though, and they would have truly seen a shell of a man, riddled with the anxiety and fear of ever being found out.
Honesty is crucial to living life the way God intended it. When it finally hit me that I was held prisoner by my web of lies, I made a change. Gradually and rather painfully, I began to seek honesty in my actions and words, which received mixed reviews from those I had lied to for so long. The cool-kids no longer accepted me, my true friends were devastated yet forgiving, and my mother, who I sat down with and apologized to, was so deeply hurt yet thankful for the honesty I now displayed. Not only did genuine relationship begin to thrive between myself and the ones I loved, but I felt like myself and knew what I stood for.
The concept of honesty is all throughout the Gospel. In his living Jesus was honest in holding others accountable and presenting the truth while living it out. In his dying Jesus did not die in secret, but on a hilltop so as to proclaim with bold honesty “this is what you deserve, but I love you enough to take your place.” In order to receive that salvation, we must honestly confess our wrongdoing so that we may be freed from the sin that should have nailed us to the cross. If we wish to live a healthy life, with less anxiety and less fear, we must be honest with those we love; our friends, our family, and our Father.
Are you being completely honest in your relationships? If not, today is the day to become an honest you.
You can read more from Tyler over at his blog.