We've all heard the phrase "honesty is the best policy" but when we find ourselves in situations where we have to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, honesty can actually appear to be the worst possible policy. It goes without saying, being honest can be tough. Telling the truth can mean we risk getting in trouble, hurting someone's feelings or having our own feelings hurt.
But without being honest with people, we prohibit ourselves from pursuing authentic relationships with others and with God. In the same way that we avoid being truthful with our friends, family members and any other people we engage with, because we're afraid of any number of possible consequences of our openness, so too can we avoid being honest with God. Sometimes we worry about fully opening up to God because we think he'll get mad at us or we're mad at him but we think we shouldn't be so we try to steer clear of discussing it as this means we'll have to accept and confront our emotions.
Our most powerful relationships are built upon trust, and it's no different when we consider the one that we have with God. Often, a reluctance to speak honestly with God points to a lack of trust in him. We can fail to trust him to be just, to be forgiving or to be helpful when in fact he is all of these things. God wants us to come to him with everything that's on our minds and even though we might not be able to see a way through, he always can. "Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know," (Jeremiah 33:3).
Once we get over our fear of telling God the truth about everything, we can still encounter difficulties in actually vocalising that honesty. Ask God to help you to be more honest, not just with him but with everyone, in every interaction. The more we speak truthfully, the more it will become second nature. We'll also experience the benefits and others will too. Think of the relief you'll experience when you unburden yourself from attempting to hide your true thoughts and self from other people and God, the possibility that your honesty could lead to others sharing things they've been concealing, and how your relationships can improve. And remember, Jesus said: "I am the way and the truth and the life." Speaking the truth will help the people we are honest with to see that Jesus lives in us.