Honesty is essential to recovery. Honesty is essential to intimacy. But honesty is not easy.
We were not created to be isolated, independent creatures. We were created to be interdependent. We need each other. And in order for us to be helped by others and to be helpful to others, we need to practice honesty. That means we must learn how to talk to each other about our thoughts and our feelings and our needs. We must learn to talk about our struggles and failures, about our dreams and our successes.
Honesty is the soil in which intimate relationships grow. It creates the possibility of being known and loved for who we really are. But it is also full of risks. If we tell the truth about ourselves, people may not listen. They may not want to know. They may not understand. They may judge and reject. They may dislike us. They may give us simple answers to unanswerable questions. They may repeat what we have said to others.
We hesitate to be honest because we have experienced these things in the past. Our feelings may have been minimized. Our thoughts may have been devalued. Our reality may have been denied. But in order to grow healthy relationships, in order to heal and recover, we need to begin to take risks. Learning honesty will be a process for us. It will not come quickly. But as we practice the disciplines of honesty we gradually become more secure in telling the truth.
I am tired of lying, when it would be just as easy to tell the truth.
But I am afraid of honesty, Lord.
It's not as easy as it sounds.
Help me to pursue honesty today.
Help me to be honest with you.
Help me to be honest with myself.
Help me to build a community of faith
where honesty is the norm.
Build in me a capacity for truth.
Copyright Dale and Juanita Ryan
National Association for Christian Recovery