I have often contemplated the meaning of Colossians 2:8 which reads, “Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that comes from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ.” It’s increasingly difficult in our world where all manner of philosophy is out there. It’s on our televisions, in our newspapers and magazines, and taught in our educational institutions. Therefore, to discern between what the world teaches and what God teaches becomes blurred.
I find this to be so in the area of when to speak, sharing our hearts, or when to be silent, guarding those things that are hidden away. James tells us in James 1:19, “Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.” Then there is that verse in Ecclesiastes 3:7, “…a time to be quiet and a time to speak.” Oh, to have God’s own wisdom reigning in our minds rather than the philosophies of this world.
I have a dear friend named Lucy Shockney. I met Lucy years ago when I had the joy of speaking at a Christian conference in France. She and her family had been missionaries there for many years. We have kept in touch ever since. I have often benefited from the wisdom that God gives Lucy in a variety of matters. Recently she wrote concerning transparency and honesty. I have asked her permission to share her thoughts with you.
“Had a great conversation yesterday. Here is what I discovered. In this day and age TRANSPARENCY AND HONESTY are valued above RELATIONSHIP. Trust me when I tell you that you need me to be genuine, you don’t need to know every little thing inside of me. Frankly you might not be able to handle the weightiness of what is going on inside me and it could wreck our relationship.
So I will be genuine but I won’t be transparent. That’s saved for people I trust and who love me. Honesty is for those relationships where we have forged the dark waters of hurt and came out ok on the other side. Otherwise my honesty can wait till we are in a stronger place.
This is not a compromise, this is an issue of maturity and timing.
Stop being TRANSPARENT 24/7 (and all over social media) and start being discreet and save your tender truths for someone who cares enough to keep them safe.” Lucy Shockney
The world’s philosophy encourages us to share all in order to build relationship. Jesus taught that it’s not wise to spill out everything to everyone called friend in an attempt to establish deeper understanding. Our good intentions in speaking truth can turn around and bite us and the friend. Jesus said in Matthew 7:6, “…Don’t throw your pearls to pigs! They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you.” Jesus was not actually calling people pigs; rather, He was teaching that, to pour out everything in our heart to everyone at any given time, is unwise. What is in your heart is precious. Some things need to stay hidden away, shared only with God. It takes His own wisdom to know when to speak and when to be silent.