Can I Be a Transparent Person? - Part 1 - Hope 103.2

Can I Be a Transparent Person? – Part 1

I want to talk about transparency—that part of life which means I am brave enough to be honest and truthful with everyone I meet. Being transparent is a wonderful trait to see in others. But many of us fail to exercise it for ourselves, for fear of failure.It’s about being sincere, being open, and being […]

By Chris WittsThursday 22 Feb 2018Morning Devotions with Chris WittsFaithReading Time: 3 minutes

I want to talk about transparency—that part of life which means I am brave enough to be honest and truthful with everyone I meet. Being transparent is a wonderful trait to see in others. But many of us fail to exercise it for ourselves, for fear of failure.

It’s about being sincere, being open, and being a real person. In other words, being authentic, having respect and concern for others. No pretence, no lies. But speaking the truth in love. I like this definition: transparency is removing the mask and revealing who you really are; it is getting beyond the surface to what is really going on in your heart.

But there is a reluctance for people to go that far. Have you heard this?:

  • You can’t trust people.
  • Everyone’s out for themselves. I’m scared.
  • If you knew me, you wouldn’t like me.

Building Walls Around Us

This is about keeping others out: people think it’s best to protect themselves from getting hurt. Sadly, what happens is, they trap themselves in a world of loneliness, fear, anger, worry, despair, or depression.

When we fear transparency we say things like:

  • If you knew me—really knew me—you may not like me; you may reject me. Since I am afraid of rejection, I can’t really get close to you or let you get close to me.
  • If I am transparent and share my intimate thoughts and ideas—who I really am with you and you reject me it will crush me so I can’t really get close to you or let you get close to me.
  • I have been transparent and shared my intimate thoughts before—I’ve trusted others and I was burned: hurt, betrayed, humiliated—so I won’t get close to you or let you get close to me.

That’s when we build a wall to keep others out. God is able to see into the human heart and nothing is hidden from him. It says in Hebrews 4:13, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.”

Nothing is Hidden from God’s Sight

Indeed, “There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known” (Matthew 10:26). Jesus declared, “For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open” (Mark 4:22). Since we know this, and we understand that we cannot look into the human heart, why not be as transparent as possible with one another, including those who are not Christians?

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We read in 2 Timothy 1:7 this about fear: “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but God has given us a spirit of power and of love and of a sound mind.” God has not given us a spirit of fear. Fear is not of God, but God has given us a spirit of love. God wants us to first connect intimately with him, and out of an intimate personal relationship with God, his perfect loves drives out all fear, and we are able to have healthy relationships with others.

God has not given us a spirit of fear. (2 Timothy 1:7)

The problem is, so many of us have not become secure in an intimate relationship with God; therefore, we fear transparency with other people—removing the mask and revealing who you really are; getting beyond the surface to what is really going on in your heart. In the Old Testament we see a remarkable story of Job who went through years of immense pain.

You might know his story of suffering and loss. He invited some very close friends into the innermost parts of his life, and one day, when events that were beyond his control went from bad to worse, his friends, rather than standing by him, what did they do? They criticised him. They accused him of wrongdoing. They gossiped about him, talked behind his back, said all sorts of bad things about him.

Listen to the pain come through these words of a broken relationship. In Job 19:19, Job says: “All of my intimate friends detest me; those I love have turned against me.”

(Read Can I Be a Transparent Person? – Part 2)