“Speaking the Truth in Love”…Or, How I’ve Come to Loathe That Phrase!

montoya
The NIV…
Or, if you prefer, the King James version...
Or, if you prefer, the King James version…

For the past week, I’ve been writing and rejecting the same blog post.

Deliberating. Fuming. Writing. Rejecting. Deliberating. Fuming. Writing. Rejecting.

You see, there’s been a particular subject weighing on my heart and I’ve been repeatedly at a failure to find the right angle under which to broach the subject.

Lately, it seems I’ve been really bothered by Christians who’ve been verbally, or internet-ally, (yes, that is now a word), beating up on people, at least in my own estimation, especially those who may be a little farther from God than they are, under the pretense of “speaking the truth in love.”

I’ve come to loathe that phrase.

“Speaking the truth in love.”

Yes, I know it’s biblical.

I’ve come to loathe it mostly because I’m not wholly convinced we (as Christians) are doing either, and it was under that pretense that I was attempting to write said post.

I was gonna get all uppity on ya’ll’s hypocritical asses on how all of you may be speaking the “truth” but are conveniently side-stepping the “in love” part.

Until I realized that every single post I’d written did the Very. Same. Thing! That I was getting’ all uppity about!

I realized that the you I was railing against was me, too!

Damn! Conviction can be a pain…

Here’s the thing…I may or may not agree with the “truth” that comes out of other Christians mouths. But I have to respect their right to say it.

I may or may not agree with the vehemence with which some Christians claim to speak the “truth”. But I have to allow for their passion.

The only thing that I would wish to interject into the dialog is that maybe it’s high time we could, and should, be having an entirely different conversation all together.

As Jen Hatmaker has said in the past…

“Every article, (or conversation), regardless of its position for or against, is the same. The support arguments; same. The rebuttals; same. The circular thinking; same. The responses are fully expended, (and in the end) we discover we are at the same impasse.”

I don’t know about any of you, but I’m tired of that impasse.

So…SO, tired.

So, fellow Christians, even though you may be “right”, even though you may be speaking the “truth”, AND even though you feel it may be done “in love”…maybe it’s time to change the conversation, change the topic, keep the destination in mind but alter the route.

Maybe take a more scenic approach.

Maybe stop for some chips, some lunch, a coffee.

Maybe even with the person you wish to “speak the truth in love” to.

Or, maybe it’s just me. But what I’ve found is that when you take the time to truly get to know the person—you know, the whole relationship thing??—whom you wish to have this life-altering conversation with, it changes the entire dynamic. You begin to realize there’s a person behind the perceived “sin”, and they begin to realize there’s a person behind the perceived hypocrisy…and suddenly it no longer seems like hypocrisy…it might even start to sound like…

“truth”

…and “love”.

After all, when you’re “speaking the truth in love” to someone, YOU don’t get to choose what “in love” sounds like.

THEY do.

Just a thought…

 

Yes, yes, I know I used a lot of “quotes” in this post. And, yes, I did it on purpose. So “there”!

 

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4 thoughts on ““Speaking the Truth in Love”…Or, How I’ve Come to Loathe That Phrase!”

  1. Here’s what hit me between the eyes in your post: “You begin to realize there’s a person behind the perceived ‘sin’, and they begin to realize there’s a person behind the perceived hypocrisy”. Hmmm… person to person communication… what a novel idea 🙂 (she says sardonically)

  2. If what you said doesn’t move the person toward freedom, what you said couldn’t have been Truth.

    John 8:32 “and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free”.

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