Debbie O’Berry, Licensed Professional Counselor; Certified Advanced Addiction Counselor
3827 W. Howell Road Mason, Michigan 48854 517-256-6751

Withholding Truth

Withholding Truth from M. Scott Peck, M.D. ‘s THE ROADLESS TRAVELED,  is our subject today.  Lying can be divided into two types: white lies and black lies.  A black like is a statement we make that we know is false.  A white lie is a statement we make that is not in itself false but that leaves out significant part of the truth. White-lying is considered socially acceptable in many of our relationships because “we don’t want to hurt peoples’ feeling”.  The selective withholding of one’s opinions must be practiced from time to time; the expression of opinions, feelings, ideas and even knowledge must be suppressed from time to time.  One of the reasons to withhold is the assessment of that person’s capacity to utilize the truth for his or her own spiritual growth. That is wise.
It is a never-ending burden of self-discipline. Our maps are continually being challenged, open people are continually growing people.  When you never speak falsely you can be secure in that they have never contributed to the confusion of the world.  They do not need to construct new lies to hide old ones.  They don’t have to cover their tracks.  The energy required for self-discipline of honesty is far less than the energy required for secretiveness.
What does the Bible says about truth and lies? There are many but here are a few.   Lev. 19:11 says “do not lie” and Col. 3:9 says, “Do not lie to each other.” There seems to be more said on truth; John 14:6 says “I am the way and the truth and the life.” I like to align myself with God’s truth.  And when I do that, I can then, (Eph 4:15a) “Instead, speak the truth in love”. 
One of the things I teach in counseling is that just because you have an opinion it doesn’t mean you have to share it.  I like to be asked to share my opinion.  Then you have the right to share. Are they ready to hear the truth?  You don’t have to answer. You don’t have to lie.   But I think the most important thing,  is what you are sharing beneficial to the person.  As Peck says, “make an assessment of that person’s capacity to utilize the truth for his or her own spiritual growth.”
I am so grateful that God is the truth and the way.  We can be directed so correctly by using God’s word.  When we try to make decision it is important to go to the word for what God’s will is.  Many people say “What is truth?”. And so true. Everyone has their own truth.  But a Christian, (a follower of Christ) will go to God’s Word for the truth and not make up his own.  Walk in truth…….John 8:32 says “Come walk the path of truth and find freedom”.  

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