Did you ever go to a carnival or a fair that had one of those funny mirrors that distorts reality? I love standing in front of the one that makes you look thin and tall. I like to imagine myself being seven feet tall, playing in the NBA, dunking the basketball, blocking shots, bumping chests with my teammates, and blowing kisses to thousands of adoring fans. Of course, that is about as likely to happen as waking up and finding a unicorn to ride to work, a DeLorean time machine to transport me back to 1985, or an Alabama fan that isn’t annoying.
I love what King David wrote in Psalm 51:6. But you desire honesty from the heart, so you can teach me to be wise in my inmost being.
Get honest with yourself. Don’t pretend, lie, or cover up. Don’t distort reality. Take a long, hard look in the mirror and get totally honest. That is difficult but necessary. It is a lot easier to make excuses, pass the buck, or blame someone else for our situation.
Honesty is important for marriage, work, friendships, success, and every relationship. You can’t have success without it. Consider three things that David shows us from this verse.
1. God uses honesty to teach me.
One of the most important aspects of honesty is what it teaches me about life. While it may often be easier to lie in the moment, honesty always wins. Over time, honesty builds a foundation of trust and empowers me to grow. Being honest with yourself is necessary to grow personally. You can’t get better until you become honest with yourself.
2. God uses honesty to give me wisdom and guidance.
Honesty produces wisdom and insight for living. Not until I am willing to look at myself in the mirror and honestly evaluate my life, my performance, my circumstances, or my sin, will I be able to improve. It is true for leadership, sports, job performance, or your health.
3. God uses honesty to grow my inner life.
I love what he said about being honest in his innermost being. Until we get completely honest with ourselves, we will never grow in the most important part of our life – the inner life. It is one thing to have a good public persona, but it is another thing altogether to have a strong private life. We must learn to spend more energy on being that on doing. The doing part is what everyone else sees. It is public and is found in our job, our performance, and in our social presence. The only way to make the “doing” sustainable, blessed, and authentic is through “being.”
Being is about the inner life. It is spiritual. It is found in connecting with God through prayer, scripture, faith, and resting in Him. Being must always precede doing. Without being honest in this way, we set ourselves up for failure, burnout, stress, worry, hypocrisy, and thinness in our souls. According to God’s Word, it all begins with getting honest with yourself. This way God will begin a work in you that lasts.