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  • Writer's pictureMegan Estes

Honesty is Everything, Cause Truth is a Person

"Thank you for your honesty, " the young teenage grocery clerk kindly murmured. My kiddo had accidentally rung up regular carrots in the self check out, but the ones we were purchasing were actually organic, which cost a bit more. (Cue eye roll for all the judgment that follows after anyone buying anything organic--ha!) As the clerk was helping us fix this mistake I couldn't help but play that line over and over in my head, "thank you for your honesty."

Honesty when ringing up groceries

Is this the point we are at as a society...that it's not a common courtesy any more to make sure the price at self-checkout is correct? Does this clerk have to witness people cheating on their self-checkout stations on a regular basis?

Are we too lazy to ring up the correctly priced produce? Do we no longer believe that honesty is everything?

Or, do we not even value honesty anymore, so we don't bother to make things right when we know that they aren't?

I value honesty, but sometimes I don't want to do the work needed to actually be honest. Whether it's ringing up the correct produce or being honest with how I actually feel instead of denial, I know my honesty to myself and others is often watered down. Do you do this, too?

While I "say" that I value honesty more than anything, I am realizing I don't actually live like that. I struggle with being honest about the areas I struggle in and can find myself in denial if I'm not actively taking inventory of my life and meeting with my accountability partner regularly.

I had to work through some conflict recently, and I was stressing about doing so. It took my accountability partner calling me out and asking several hard questions for me to fully realize what was underneath all the anxiety surrounding this conflict. I didn't want to be honest. I didn't want to be honest about the way someone had hurt me or my family, and I didn't want to be honest with myself that this relationship was over. Denial had become a cozy couch for my heart to sink into when thinking about this situation. While I have extremely high standards for honesty in our home and life in general, I've learned that the hardest person to be honest with is often myself.

I originally starting writing this blog post months ago because I was genuinely frustrated with the lack of honestly and integrity in our society at the time. It's ridiculous. You truly can't trust anyone to do a good job anymore (at least it can seem that way). We have to really seek out truthful and honest work these days. While I was ranting in my mind about worldly moral decline, leave it to God to hold the mirror up to me and remind me that I, too, struggle with honesty, my struggle just looks different.

While I could not hold the guilt of stealing something from the grocery store or cheating on a test, (I once accidentally looked at my classmate's spelling test in elementary school and left an answer blank so I wouldn't get the credit for it, even though I totally could have cheated and written down what I had seen haha!) I am realizing that I've regularly struggled with being honest with myself, especially when it involves conflict. I've erred on grace my whole life. I'd rather forgive someone and move on than tell them that they've hurt me. Even when people have come to apologize about something that definitely needed an apology, I have often made it seem like I'm fine and there's no need to apologize--and I've apologized back when there was nothing for me to be apologizing for! I have dabbled in denial. Denial about my struggles, denial regarding where I need help, and even denial about who is truly a trustworthy friend. Maybe it's because I am an eternal optimist, or maybe it's because I just haven't truly understood the impact of denial. Denial is kind of a big thing actually. It's the "action of declaring something untrue" according to Oxford languages. It's not just "letting something go" or putting off the truth. Denial Is ACTIVELY refusing truth. Whoa. God, where am I refusing the truth about myself, my family, my community? I don't want to be hypocrite. I want to walk in truth, God's truth.

I want to learn to accept the truth about myself and others instead of dwelling in denial. I want to live honestly and truthfully because I'm connected to Truth himself! Jesus is Truth! I think that's why the enemy has such a stronghold on lies and denial--because God is TRUTH. If we can live in denial that our behaviors don't really matter, there isn't a God, or that we don't need help in our sin, then the enemy can keep us from living with Truth himself. I don't want to live that way.

As painful as it is to admit my shortcomings, I would rather be free-- living in the Truth that God intended for me to live in. He came for freedom! No games, no denial, no schemes, just freedom. Praise God there is absolute truth. Praise God for His Word and Spirit so that we can KNOW Him and KNOW Truth. There's no other way to live honestly. If you want to know what is true these days, you need to spend time with Jesus and His Word. Honesty is everything, because truth is a person.

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