Think about the people you are closest to. What makes you close to them? Usually we feel the most attached to the people we are honest with and tell our thoughts, desires, and feelings. Honesty changes relationships.
Oh, dear Corinthian friends! We have spoken honestly with you, and our hearts are open to you. 12 There is no lack of love on our part, but you have withheld your love from us. 13 I am asking you to respond as if you were my own children. Open your hearts to us!
2 Cor 6:11-13 (NLT)
When people are honest with us, it makes us feel loved and trusted. Think about a time someone was honest with you about the good, the bad, and the ugly going on in their life. It probably helped you to feel closer and to better understand that person.
What Stops Us From Being Honest?
The fear of human opinion disables; trusting in God protects you from that.
Proverbs 29:25 (MSG)
We can want people to be honest with us, but sometimes it is hard for us to be vulnerable in return. If you look at your current relationships, are you being honest about your own life, your own feelings, and your own heart?
Fear can stop us from telling others the truth. It can be hard to open up about the challenges in our life or the things that make us feel ashamed or embarrassed. I know for me, I do not always want to tell people about my fears, insecurities, or arguments I have with my husband. Those things can make me feel weak and I can get worried about what people will think about me. But the Bible pushes us to open wide our hearts; it pushes us to be honest about everything!
The Courage to be Honest
But the only way we can overcome the fear is by putting our trust in God. It takes courage to be honest! And courage comes from God.
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.
2 Timothy 1:7 (NLT)
In order to get the courage to be honest with people about every area of our life, we need to first be honest with God. When we are honest with God, He will take away the fear and replace it with courage and love. Then not only will we be able to feel closer to people, we will also be able to have relationships where we can be loving back. We all needs friends that we can let down with and tell about the hard things going on in our life. When we are honest about these things we get the opportunity to receive encouragement.
Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up.
Proverbs 12:25 (NLT)
When we are honest about our anxieties and fears, it allows the other person to give you a new perspective on the things you are going through. When our worries are all in our head, it can burden us and feel like a heavy weight on our shoulders. But when we open up about our challenges, it gives the opportunity for the other person to give us the encouragement we need.
Honesty can change our friendships from distant to attached and can help us to enjoy life! So what do you need to be honest about?