In light of our current crazy political environment I find this quote incredibly insightful:
“The effort to state an absolute fact is simply an attempt to achieve what is humanly impossible; all I can do is give you my interpretation of the facts.” — Ivy Lee, one of the first to practice the new field of public relations in the 1920s. (From These Truths, by Jill LePore, p. 412)
I hate to say it, but that guy got it right 100 years ago. It’s the environment in which we now exist.
1 Cor. 13:6 — Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. (NIV)
The careful walk we must take in the Spirit is to understand we want to communicate with kindness, but we cannot work so hard on being kind that we neglect truth. Then, there is the other side that gives little regard for kindness because TRUTH is to vital to them.
If we work so hard to be kind but neglect truth, we imperil others who are obviously ignoring something that bring LIFE. But truth delivered without compassion or kindness is likely to fall on deaf ears.
What brings that balance is the powerful love of God. It is sincere love that causes us to wake up to truth and then long for Kingdom rightness to be brought into the lives of others. It is a heart with feeling compassion that draws us to others and with every possible means we want to bring TRUTH into other lives. The heart truly set free by Christ longs for truth in others and does its best to communicate with kindness.
But the truth spoken in love doesn’t always meet with “positive” results. The thing to remember then is that the results are not up to us. We don’t get to dictate the response at the altar call. We WANT to manipulate that response, but a heart set free by Christ will not let that happen.
Speak truth in love. Rejoice in truth. Rejoice in loving others. Do not manipulate others for response. Bring Kingdom rightness and let the Spirit bring the results.