"It doesn't matter what color you paint a lie; it's still a lie." - Pastor Anthony Lee Edwards
Anthony Lee Edwards, or "Lee", is one of the best pastors I've ever had the privilege of meeting. If you're ever in Savannah, GA, do yourself a huge favor and visit Beulah Baptist Church on E. Anderson Street where he's Senior Pastor.
He's funny and charismatic but he pulls absolutely no punches when it comes to Scripture. His quote about painting lies still resonates with me.
You know which lie I'm talking about. The "white" lie:
Telling a friend that their shirt looks great when it makes them look like a half-melted marshmallow.
Telling your aunt that her cole slaw is delicious when it tastes like the inside of a hot pumpkin.
Telling your friend that his band sounds great when they sound like Radiohead.
We can paint these lies the most vibrant color on our palette; they're still lies.
The motives behind white lies are good. We don't want to insult anyone or hurt someone's feelings. Maybe we even use it as a copout because we just don't feel like investing our energy into being honest.
But white lies do more harm than good. A white lie isn't typically a one-time thing. It generally leads to a repetition of the lie over the course of time. Eventually, we get comfortable with lying.
"Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear." Ephesians 4:29
If we gently told our dear Aunt Susan that her cole slaw could use some tweaking, she might tweak it. Then we won't have to hide our gags at family gatherings just to make her feel better.
If we lovingly suggested that our friend wear something more form-fitting, we'd save them the risk of receiving awkward looks from passers by.
Most importantly, we wouldn't be lying. Honesty is the root of every healthy relationship. If we're frank with one another, we'll never have to worry about covering up the truth or changing the way we act around certain people.
Be honest with one another. Lovingly advise one another. That's how we can blot out colorful lies and make this Kingdom grow.