I was recently in a doctors office and overheard a conversation that took place between two women. One woman was telling the other how she had purchased some shoes that were quite expensive and had been hiding them from her husband. The other woman then said that she didn't hide things from her husband, but she didn't dare tell him the truth about how much money she spent on a particular item.
There was no shame in their disclosure, they both spoke as though this was a way of life. I suppose it is!
I had a few thoughts on this as I went about my day. The first was that I was still fairly shocked at their willingness to lie so blatantly to their husbands. I wondered what was wrong in their marriage relationships that they had to lie and hide the truth. I also wondered what would happen if and when the truth would be revealed.
The second and more pressing question on my mind was regarding the lie itself and their common attitude over it. Why were they not bothered over it? Why was I?
I think it is because as a Christian, my life is oriented so very differently. It would be a lie for me to say I have never told a lie, or that I am not tempted to still lie on occasion. The difference I think is that my conscience kills me when I do! I desire to glorify God by how I live my life.
The Word of God is my guide for I am to conduct myself. Specifically regarding the telling of lies Paul says this:
Therefore, laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH EACH ONE OF YOU WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for we are members of one another. Ephesians 4:25 (NASB)
To lay aside falsehood means to literally get it away from you. Get away from telling lies and begin to speak the truth because it glorifies God.
When you lie you destroy trust. Lying ruins the bond of unity (Eph 4:3) that we are to have with each other; and causes others to doubt that the words that come out of your mouth are true and honest. Face it, when someone lies to you how willing are you to trust them when they tell you something the next time?
When people we expect to be able to trust - or people we ought to be able to trust begin to show themselves as liars and deceivers this shakes our confidence to the core. Believe it or not, we really ought to be able to trust politicians, and pastors alike! And sadly, they both often let their people down.
What can you do? If you have the sinful habit of lying, the change must begin in your heart. You must determine that lying needs to stop for one reason and one reason alone- it does not bring glory to God.
Then begin to renew your mind with the Word of God. What does the Bible say about lying and truth telling? Put into practice in daily life what you learn.
Take the risk of telling the truth. Sometimes it is risky, no doubt. However speaking the truth in love is never the wrong move. As you honor God in your speech you will find it becomes easier and easier and you will care less and less about man pleasing.