GOING ALL THE WAY AROUND YOUR ELBOW TO REACH YOUR MOUTH

BY STEVE DUNN

Blogger Karen Zacharias commented recently on Jodie Foster’s confession/nonconfession that many people interpreted as her saying she was a lesbian. Jodie didn’t really out herself but left a lot of people wondering. Zacharias said Jodie’s semi-confession reminded her of an expression they had in the South, “she went all the way around her mouth to reach her elbow.”TransparencyBlog

Transparency is a virtue of the Christian faith, but is generally in short supply in humanity’s dealings with another. And accountability (yours, not mine) is a value rarely embraced without some kind of external enforcement.

Transparency is a Christian virtue because is a value that reflects the nature and person of God. God is truth. There can be no truth truly without transparency.

Read that sentence again.

Jesus said to his followers. “You are the light of the world.” When light enters the room if drives out darkness. Darkness hides. Light illuminates and reveals.

In the Sermon in the Mount Jesus said: “Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.” (Matthew 5:37) How’s that for transparency? When we find it necessary to qualify our comments we are taking a step towards deception. When we find it necessary to say more than “yes” or “no” we are expressing our fear that people will not tolerate the truth.

Now Jesus wasn’t saying give one word answers nor was he advocating the brutality that often accompanies human bluntness. Paul expresses the spirit of Jesus’ words when he says, “… speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.” (Ephesians 4:15)

Our transparency is intended to be an expression of our love for our brother, our love for our neighbor. Our transparency says “my love is genuine, my motives are pure.” Transparency also is a statement of your trust of the other person. Remember Jack Nicholson’s famous line in A Few Good Men? “The truth? You can’t handle the truth!:

Transparency and truth say to the other, “I believe you need the truth and as your friend, I will help you deal with the truth.”speak-the-truth-show-your-love-85089223

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