“Say just a simple ‘Yes, I will’ or ‘No, I won’t.’ Your word is enough”.
Matt 5:37 (TLB)
A few years ago I arrived into Beijing airport and had to get a taxi to a specific destination. I had taken great care to get the address written in Chinese to give to the taxi driver. As I showed him the piece of paper, he nodded enthusiastically, smiled and said, ‘Yes, yes, no problem sir’. Happily I climbed into the passenger seat and started the journey. Three hours later, after driving in circles and visiting countless wrong destinations, I decided to cut my losses and just got out of the car.
We are all great at giving people the answers we think that they want to hear. Responses that present us as having it all sorted, answers that make us look good. Jesus reminds us here that our word should be clear and dependable, as another translation puts it, “Let your yes be yes”.
There is something disarming and liberating in honesty. Proverbs 24:26 tells us that, “An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips”. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell and even harder to hear but the when given in love, the truth is powerful and is the foundation of authentic, meaningful relationships.
Each day ask God to help you to honestly and authentically honour those around.
In case you were wondering, I did eventually get to my destination…2 hours later!