Former President William Howard Taft once said:
Don’t write so that you can be understood…
write so that you can’t be misunderstood.
Wars have been started over misunderstandings. Careers have been destroyed because of something someone said or wrote decades ago — things they thought long forgotten. I find it interesting during political interviews and debates when, asked a simple question, a candidate gives a two-minute response, and still never actually answers the question. In the age of social media, we hear horror stories all the time regarding simple misunderstandings that are blown out of proportion. Someone makes a comment on Twitter or Facebook which is promptly misunderstood or taken out of context. It is then regurgitated by someone else, and pretty soon feelings are hurt, relationships are destroyed, and the character assassins have more than enough to keep them busy for days and weeks to come.
And why all the misunderstanding? Because, in many cases, people are more concerned with being socially or politically correct than being honest.
Let your yes be yes, and your no be no.
Jesus said to “let your yes be yes, and your no be no”. He encouraged us to speak the truth with love.
Sometimes the truth is difficult to say, and harder to hear.
Sometimes the truth hurts worse than a slap in the face or a punch in the chest.
In the movie The Dark Knight Rises, Bruce Wayne’s butler, Alfred, has a great quote:
Maybe it’s time we all stop trying to outsmart the truth, and let it have its day.
That’s good advice that we would all do well to heed. Maybe it’s time for we in the Church to be honest with each other, and operate with the truth and integrity that God has called us all to. After all, how can we expect people to hear the truth that can set them free if we ourselves are not operating in truth. And the great thing about speaking the truth is that no one who speaks the truth ever has to remember what it was they said in the past.
God is a God of truth, and in Him there is “no shadow of turning”. As long as we are standing on the truth of His Word, we never have to worry about where it is we are standing.