Dec 12, 2008

Truth Stumbles in the Streets

Our courts oppose the righteous,
    and justice is nowhere to be found.
Truth stumbles in the streets,
    and honesty has been outlawed.

I’m struck by the phrase, “Truth stumbles in the streets.” A more literal translation would read: “Truth totters in the square.” According to Isaiah, honesty was disappearing from the gathering places in towns and cities. This criticism applied to public officials as well as to everyday citizens. Deceit ruled the day.

How sadly similar to our own time! Truth continues to stumble in the street as political leaders “misspeak,” as candidates “spin,” as religious leaders are discovered to have secret lives of sin, and as business executives deceive their stockholders. Yet even as we see our leaders squander the truth, we must admit how tempting it is for us to be less than truthful in our personal and professional lives. When we mess up at work, are we willing to own our mistakes? What about in our families? Or if we see our friends making terrible choices for their lives, are we bold enough to say something in love?

The God of truth calls us to speak and live truthfully, at home and at work, in church and “in the streets.” Our truthfulness reflects God’s own character and sets us apart in a world where, it seems, “honesty has been outlawed.”

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: In your life, where does truth tend to stumble? What might you do today to live more truthfully?

PRAYER: Gracious Lord, as it was in the day of Isaiah, so it is today. Truth is stumbling in our streets, on the airwaves, in print, and on the Internet. And, if I’m going to be honest with you, I sometimes fail to be truthful in my own life. A “little white lie” here and there makes life so much easier.

Forgive me, Lord, for my contribution to the lack of truthfulness in our world. Help me to be a person who speaks and lives the truth. May I do so with love, and also with boldness.

Help your people, dear Lord, to be filled with truth. May we speak and live in such a way that people see you and your truth through us. Amen.

P.S. from Mark
If you’re looking for a more thorough discussion of truthful living, may I recommend a book I’ve written called Dare to Be True: Living in the Freedom of Complete Honesty. In this book, I tackle the challenge of truthfulness from a biblical and practical point of view.

Reader Comment