Monday, October 25, 2010

Lessons Learned from Pooh-Bear

Honesty consists of the unwillingness to lie to others; maturity, which is equally hard to attain, consists of the unwillingness to lie to oneself.--Sydney J. Harris

"I don't see much sense in that," said Rabbit. "No," said Pooh humbly, "there isn't. But there was going to be when I began it. It's just that something happened to it along the way."
-- Winnie the Pooh

Very, very recently, I have been struggling painfully with honesty.  Having always surrounded myself by close friends who have integrity and authenticity, and having grown up in a home where honesty was always given and received in love, I have been muddling through circumstances recently that have me puzzling over basic premises of relationship.  I don't really know what to do when someone doesn't tell the truth -- no -- how to even KNOW when someone isn't telling the truth.  When someone says one thing, but acts in another way, I don't know when to give grace and forgiveness and when to walk away.  I feel confused; as a Christ-follower, I want to treat people the way that I want to be treated.  I want my life to be one that offers grace and forgiveness.  But where does grace end and foolishness begin?  It's incredibly distressing to realize that I can't tell the difference between authenticity and manipulation.  It's horrifying to think that I trusted someone absolutely, and now I'm finding that I was absolutely wrong to do so.  

Maturing means not lying to myself.  As much as I want to believe that all was rosy and bright before the recent storms, I can't distance my mind from knowing that I am seeing more Truth now that I did for all those months.  

My pastors are preaching through Jonah, and a few weeks ago, Kyle said something along the lines of "It's in the storms of life that we behave as we really are; the person you are in the storm says a lot about who you are in the calm."  That's probably a bad paraphrase, but I'm thankful that I know the One who walks with me through every storm.  I hope that I can reflect Him truthfully in my actions and words, and my prayer is to figure out this complicated marriage of wisdom and grace...

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