There is a BIG difference between being open and being honest. In any relationship, particularly a romantic relationship, it is imperative that we are honest with one another but not always open.
- Dishonesty is a lie. God calls us to honesty in our lives not to lie or pretend something is true when it isn’t. I think of the movie Runaway Bride, when Maggie changes her favorite kind of eggs depending on the man she is with. She put on a mask to try and make them believe she was exactly who they wanted. Unfortunately we do this all too often and then wonder why, after the other person finds out who we REALLY are, the relationship fails, and both of us are left with hurt and distrust.
- Dishonesty hides God’s will. How can we ever determine God’s will for us in a relationship if we mask who we are, if we try to pass off a facade of who we WANT to look like in place of who we really are. We need to know who the other person is, and they need to know who we are. Our prayers for wisdom and guidance are thwarted when we are dishonest.
- God calls us to be discerning and show discretion. It is not appropriate to OPEN our hearts fully to someone who is not our husband! There are things that are just not appropriate to discuss in a dating relationship that hasn’t become engagement! I can be fully honest without being fully open. It is GOOD to say sometimes, “I don’t think I’m ready to share that with you right now.”
In our culture of sharing our most intimate details on Facebook, we have lost the wisdom and character quality of discretion. The dictionary defines it as:
“the quality of being discreet, especially with reference to one’s own
actions or speech; prudence or decorum”
Knowing when we should hold something close to our hearts to guard it is part of wisdom, and wisdom comes from understanding God’s Word.
Discretion will guard you, Understanding will watch over you…Prov 2:11
My son, give attention to my wisdom, Incline your ear to my understanding; that you may observe discretion And your lips may reserve knowledge. Prov 5:1-2
“I, wisdom, dwell with prudence, And I find knowledge and discretion.” Prov 8:12
We should learn to not open our hearts fully to people we date, not until we are engaged to be married. Too often (even as young as 13) we convince ourselves, “Oh HE is the one I’m going to marry!” And we plunge head-long into an intimacy (and I’m not even talking physically) that God intended only for marriage. No, we should NOT be fully open with those we date. When we do that, we give pieces of our hearts away (as discussed by Josh Harris in I Kissed Dating Good-bye) – where our WHOLE heart should be carefully reserved for our husbands.
So, in your relationships, be HONEST, but not always fully OPEN. Build discretion into your hearts and minds and speech. This is part of growing in wisdom, God’s wisdom!
Kate Megill is follower of Jesus, first and foremost. She is also a wife to a wonderful husband and homeschooling mom of 8. She has a passion about older women teaching younger women in the manner of Titus 2:3-5. Kate blogs at Teaching What Is Good and can be found on Facebook and Twitter.