When we were teenagers we used to play the game: Truth or Dare. You’d be asked a personal embarrassing question, and then have the choice to tell the truth or accept a dare or challenge from your friends. Its a great game while hanging out in the spa or jacuzzi on a cold day. The dare was often, get out and jump in the cold pool for two minutes. Truth and love are major themes of the apostle John. Some people say, “I have to tell the truth, so I don’t have to be loving”. For them its either one or the other. But, the misunderstanding is that these are not poles of tension with each other. The tension for truth is the opposite pole of error and deceit. The opposite pole of love is apathy and at its extreme, hate. So, we can tell the truth and still be loving while doing it. How? Remember that kindness can accompany our communication and praying for the other person goes a long way. A good standard for our communication is that it should always be for the edification of the hearer, not the gratification of the speaker. Let’s endeavor to always state the truth in a loving way, and leave the results to God.
The elder to the chosen lady and her children, whom I love in truth; and not only I, but also all who know the truth, for the sake of the truth which abides in us and will be with us forever: Grace, mercy and peace will be with us, from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love. 2 John 1:1-3 NASB
What difficult communications do I have to make today? How can I state the truth in a loving way so that the hearers are built up in their faith?
God, as this day begins- Oh, so much to be and do for You. I pause to invite You to work within me and make every communication truthful, grace-filled, and presented in a loving way. I remember again that this life I am living is no longer my own, but I have been bought with a price. Thank you for the myriad of blessings. I pray for those in hospital to make miraculous recoveries- Marilyn (ability to speak and read again), Anne (healing of her broken bones and ability to walk/be mobile again), Ruth (to come to herself and senses, clear thinking, freedom from any substance). And Lord Jesus- please be very real and present with all who are thinking about their family members who died these recent days.