Two girls whispering

In all Honesty, be Wise!

In all Honesty, be Wise!

My honesty compels me to share all the things I am thinking in my head, my wisdom compels me to keep quiet! I was taught from an early age to tell the truth, but speaking the truth about all the things I am thinking may not always be the best thing to do. There is some stuff going on there that would be best left unsaid. It would be lovely to have a giant brain eraser at times to remove all those thoughts we’d rather not have, wouldn’t it?

Also, speaking the truth about people to other people, if it includes their wrong doings, is not wise. We may be tempted to tell everyone how we have been injured by so-and-so and paint a pretty picture by framing it as ‘honesty’ or ‘truth’ or ‘righteous indignation’. However there’s some other not so nice names for these too, they can also be termed ‘slander’, ‘gossip’ and ‘indiscretion’ and these only destroy relationships.

Words that break down another person’s character will break down the relationship between you too. Words have power to destroy nations even, we need only look towards the media today to see how leaders of the world bring conflict by their unwise words. I’m sure we can all think of a few foolish tweets that have gone viral!

There is great power in words, the things we say can change the course of our lives. Usually the words we utter come from the intentions of our hearts and the thoughts in our heads. Do we need to utter every unguarded thought?

Negative words from a parent can scar a child for the rest of their adult lives, Conversely, positive words can restore broken relationships and heal broken hearts.

We need to be quiet in some areas and speak out in others. Keeping quiet when we know someone is being hurt is not wise. How best to proceed under those circumstances? Every situation is different but when a victim confides in you for help the wise choice is to act on that request.

Most parents emphasise the importance of teaching our kids not to tell lies, nor to whisper secrets about one another. Do we also teach them the art of discretion, of not talking behind peoples’ backs too? Have we figured out how to explain the difference between telling the truth vs ‘telling tales’ about each other? Discerning the difference requires a patient listening ear and a wise response in love

Truth spoken in wisdom brings life. Unkind words spoken in foolishness only destroy and cause ruin.

How will you use your words today?

They say the best way to remove negative thoughts is to replace them with positive ones. If our thoughts eventually work their way our into words then it’s our minds we need to change first. If it’s life and healing we are looking for, you can’t get any better than filling our minds with the WORD of LIFE itself.

Here’s a fairly comprehensive list from the Book of Proverbs relating to how the words of our mouths relate to being wise.

  • you have been trapped by what you said, ensnared by the words of your mouth.
  • The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.
  • The wise store up knowledge, but the mouth of a fool invites ruin.
  • From the mouth of the righteous comes the fruit of wisdom, but a perverse tongue will be silenced.
  • The lips of the righteous know what finds favor, but the mouth of the wicked only what is perverse.
  • With their mouths the godless destroy their neighbors, but through knowledge the righteous escape.
  • Through the blessing of the upright a city is exalted, but by the mouth of the wicked it is destroyed.
  • A fool’s mouth lashes out with pride, but the lips of the wise protect them.
  • The discerning heart seeks knowledge, but the mouth of a fool feeds on folly.
  • The heart of the righteous weighs its answers, but the mouth of the wicked gushes evil.
  • The hearts of the wise make their mouths prudent, and their lips promote instruction.
  • The words of the mouth are deep waters, but the fountain of wisdom is a rushing stream.
  • The mouths of fools are their undoing, and their lips are a snare to their very lives.
  • Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.
  • A lying tongue hates those it hurts, and a flattering mouth works ruin.
  • Let someone else praise you, and not your own mouth; an outsider, and not your own lips.
  • “If you play the fool and exalt yourself, or if you plan evil, clap your hand over your mouth!
And further on in Scripture, the New Testament also has teaching about the wisdom of having a tamed tongue:
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:29 
Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. James 1:26
When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. James 3:3
Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. James 3:5
The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. James 3:6
but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. James 3:8
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. James 3:9
Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. James 3:10
For, “Whoever would love life and see good days must keep their tongue from evil and their lips from deceitful speech. 1 Peter 3:10

Finally:

Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. Ephesians 4:15

The WORD is called the TRUTH and LIFE because it is wisdom for this life and the next.

How will you use your words today?


Girl whispering in her friend's ear in all honesty be wise


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12 thoughts on “In all Honesty, be Wise!

  1. As they say, ‘honesty is the best policy’ to add to your list of examples. I think as adults filtered honesty becomes a learned behaviour. Children learn as they go along, going from very unfiltered to a little more filtered as they grow up. I always counsel my daughter not to say anything about someone that she wouldn’t say to them (within reason). Equally, if someone persistently talks about others, chances are they will do the same to you. With the exception of speaking your truth. Not doing so can lead to all kinds of misunderstandings. This is a tricky one for kids to get right. I think it often comes down to boundaries and what is acceptable. Sometimes if we don’t speak our truth, others will step over our boundaries. I would say in summary that this is a continual learning process for adults and children alike. I have certainly learned some great lessons in this very subject over the last few weeks. Thanks you for sharing with #tweensteensbeyond

    1. So true, this is a continual learning process for all of us and kids certainly are like sponges, picking up from us adults about how to behave. Communicating effectively can be an art form but also necessary for healthy relationships. We all get that wrong too! I guess this post would tie up well with the concept pf forgiveness too.

  2. I think human communication is a very complicated skill and it’s not surprising that it takes children some time to learn it. I don’t think we ever get it perfectly right – I know that I don’t. Sometimes it takes a lot of confidence to speak the truth and it can mean standing out from the crowd which many teens are loathed to do. Very interesting post Liberty, thanks so much for sharing with us at #TweensTeensBeyond

    1. Even adults hate standing out from the crowd, we worry that we will be laughed at or rejected by our friends. Not as much as teens, but it’s still there – certainly for me anyway. I suppose that’s why they call it having ‘courage’ of one’s convictions.

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