Honesty is such a lonely word

Yep. If you are old enough, you’ve probably heard this song by Billy Joel. It’s a sad song, and I usually avoid sad songs on my playlist. But notice we don’t hear it much anymore. Must be a trend.

I’m going to go into this segment building the argument that lying is a baseline problem in society. While, besides under oath, we don’t really punish people for lying much anymore. Could be the one thing that across the board most people are guilty of in one form or another.

It usually starts as a child. I have tried to teach my kids to not lie. In turn, I try to practice what I preach. I try to not put myself in a position to have to lie. I’m not proud to say I have done it before, and lived a lie for a short time, it was not pleasant, and I worked hard to earn trust back with those who I lied to. Ever since then, honesty has been sort of a quest of mine.

But in a way, I understand the lie. Reasoning includes not hurting the one you love, to cover up in an effort to move on, to not shock a group of people, to stay out of trouble or simply state “it’s none of their business”.

Living in a blended family, you witness a myriad of lying from both kids and adults. I notice from the kids I’ve raised that lying can be something you get comfortable with. Now that most of my kids are older, they will occasionally tell me about a lie they lived, or that a friend coerced them to do…now that the years have passed and we’re adults now. Right?

That’s actually the part where I get concerned. It’s sometimes hard to hear “hey dad, remember that time I said I did this or that? Yeah, I was just lying.” Because now that some are married, have jobs and relationships, I hope and pray that lying streak hasn’t translated into something done to another person. It also feels terrible knowing you’ve been lied to.

This takes me to the art of the lie when it comes to our political leaders and the nut jobs in the media. I’ve seen so much lying going on in the media and the politicians, especially these past few years. It’s honestly amazing. I sometimes wonder if these pundits have taken a course on lying before they entered the field they’re in. Politicians lying is almost a constant butt-end of a joke, and yet, it keeps coming. No one seems to be held accountable.

In Mormon doctrine (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), the Book of Mormon trace the story of the constant battle between the Nephites and the Lamanites. Those who strive to follow Christ are constantly persecuted by those who have left the faith, or were taught by non-believers. It was a constant cycle of righteousness and wickedness. But what always led to it was changing the family history in an effort to justify hurting the faithful. After a while, the persecutors became what was called “past feeling”.

I would see people who have become “past feeling” and would be amazed at the work. I would comment to my wife that a certain person is now in the phase where the sky is green, and 2 plus 2 is 7, right is wrong, and etc. No matter what evidence you present, what ever you bring to the table, it won’t matter because you are wrong. You’re not part of the team.

In this turbulent world, I present a few rules I live by when finding truth:

First off, only seek for the truth you need for your current condition. I’m not saying don’t learn history or study from the past, but as you scroll on social media, only focus on what is most important to you.

Second, learn to discern truth. In your learning, be ok with being wrong. This is your time to weed out the falsehoods in your life.

Third, cleanse your own life of dishonesty. If you are living a dishonest life, do NOT expect to feel the promptings of the Holy Spirit helping you to discern truth. Earn back the trust of our Father in Heaven to give you the truth that you need.

Honesty is such a lonely word. But so many problems could be solved when honestly abounds. Our political leaders will never act as the old man always dressed as a ghost in Scooby Doo when, after being caught, he would say “I would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for these darn kids”. I think the general public continue to wait for that moment in our politics.

Keep waiting, it’ll never happen.

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