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Recently one of my children and I had a phone conversation about a situation in life that begged to be resolved. I don’t like to give advice–especially to my adult kids–unless I’m asked so we merely talked about various approaches to setting things right again.

I was surprised to hear a statement I had shared some time ago. I don’t remember saying it but there it was. My child remembered. I smiled!

“Always speak the truth even if your voice shakes.” Whoa! This sentence punched me in the gut. I felt the heat of the words, and their truth even more so. We decided then and there that this was the best approach to resolving the incident we discussed and any others that came up in our lives.

Saying what we mean is important, but as the Al-Anon slogan reminds me, “. . .but don’t say it mean.” Not exactly correct English but I get the point and I assume you do too. Tone is everything.

No fudging, hedging, hiding, or manipulating. And if your voice shakes, so be it. Say how it is for you to your spouse, child, neighbor, friend or even stranger so you can go to bed each night with a clear and clean conscience. Of course there are times when speaking truth may not require any words. It may be a look, a posture, a behavior, or a facial expression. But when communicated with love, decency, and honesty, you have done so with God’s blessing.

I’m going to take up this bit of wisdom and practice practicing it in all my affairs during 2016. I’ll let you know next December how I did. And if you want to join me, I’d be happy for your company.Bright Idea

“But above all, my fellow believers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath; but let your yes be [a truthful] yes, and your no be [a truthful] no, so that you may not fall under judgment.” (James 5:12 AMP)




Speak the Truth Even If . . . — 16 Comments

  1. Very interesting! This same dilemma came up with two of my friends this week over setting 2016 goals (and realizing they had to set some boundaries with family members on their availability). Tell the truth even if your voice shakes…excellent advice! (So is the “don’t be mean about it.”) Sometimes it feels like a fine line there!

    Happy New Year, Karen!

  2. I had to smile when I read your subject! Just this morning I read a page in a book a close friend gave me: “Swing High, Life Lessons from Childhood” by Anthony Gunn. The subject is: “What are you like as a liar?”
    We teach our children that honesty is the best policy, yet we cringe when a child says to their grandmother, ‘My mum says you are mean’. This is a little off the subject you have here but it still seems “related” somehow.
    Karen, Charles’s friend, Fontaine said: ” If you always tell the truth you do not have to remember what you said”. makes sense to me!
    Thanks for these great thoughts and ‘reminders’!
    Love and best wishes to you. Margaret

  3. Thanks, Margaret. I like what Fontaine said. Bless his heart. He was a loyal friend to Charles. Maybe they’ve connected again on the other side.

  4. Very well said, Karen. “Don’t say it mean,” is a good reminder. I’m listening to the CD’s of the apologetics conference and one of the speakers reminds us that we don’t study apologetics to “sling it to them,” to win the debate … but wisdom tempers truth with love, so HOW we speak is the other part of the equation. Thanks for your good post.

    • Thanks, Carol. I appreciate your comment and reminder of what we learned at the apologetics conference.

  5. Oh this is so true! Tone IS everything! It conveys love, trust, condescending attitudes and respect! You are right about no words too and not giving advice unless asked. I am going to join you in your quest, especially with my grown children!

    • Thanks, Jerri. How nice to have you as a companion on our path to telling the truth in love–even if our voices shake. 🙂

    • Nancy, lovely to hear from you. Hugs and blessings to you, as well. Have a beautiful new year.

  6. I find speaking up very challenging. My words often come out too bluntly, despite efforts to phrase things acceptably. I’ve been praying for “courage to change the things I can,” which involves honesty, and to learn to convey the gentleness I intend. I’m learning. This is a great challenge for 2016!

    • Thanks for your honesty, Columba. May 2016 find all of us speaking our truths with love and gentleness.

  7. Karen, I have been in trouble so many times for speaking the truth, but it’s better to be in trouble with man-kind than with God.

    • Mary, I do understand. And I also agree that it’s best to be ‘in trouble’ with people rather than with God!

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