Luab: Unqualified honesty-A A +A
Saturday, July 21, 2012
DON’T tell me you love me if you just barely love me. That would be dishonest. Some men fall short in honesty most of the time when out of a certain sense of embarrassment they can’t tell the girl that the love they feel for her is not deep enough for a serious commitment.
In my younger days, I remember a cousin of mine who was cleverly manipulated by his grandmother into marrying a girl who was madly in love with him. His grandmother owed the family of the girl a huge amount of money. When she saw that the parents of the girl liked my cousin, she convinced this cousin of mine that he was ready for marriage and that this was the best opportunity for him to improve his status in life. I saw my cousin on his wedding day, and I knew he wasn’t happy at all.
There are many ways of interpreting the word honesty, but there are no compromises when it comes to honesty.
Parents will insist that a child take a course which they choose. Sometimes the child agrees to take the course even if he is secretly yearning to be a journalist. However, because he is a good son, he obeys the father and he takes up engineering.
Several years after graduation, he is asked by the father if he is happy. He answers, “Yes, Dad.” He means he is happy that he made his parents happy. Is he happy in his work? Of course not! Unqualified honesty means telling the truth! He could have said, “I am happy because I made you happy, but I still long to be a journalist!” Deep down in his heart, he was willing to have gone through small pay slips, or rejection slips for unaccepted articles, rigid training as copy editor etc. There was still a part of him which was empty.
Another example of unqualified honesty is when nobody is around to see what you are doing. When the boss is away, do you play? When you are given a per diem for work outside the office, do you charge only the official expenses or do you bloat your expenses? Do you treat friends using your expense account even if they are not clients? Do you spend the day sleeping on a work day when you are told to travel outside the city for an important assignment?
Some men will only be honest if someone is looking. I’ve seen this happen a couple of times among children. When a paper bill of money is seen on the floor, the kid will look around first if he is seen. If somebody sees him, he will return it to the teacher. Are you like that kid? Many times we forget that God sees everything we do!
Concert tickets usually are expensive. How is one able to get in without paying for a ticket? Usually there are people who wait for rehearsals to happen. By pretending to be part of the crew, they are able to watch the whole performance for free. You might say that it takes brains to do that, but we are talking about honesty.
Siblings normally protect each other by covering up for each other. When curfew hour is not obeyed by one, the other stands up for him and says: “He was home early enough! I opened the door for him!” When the maid tells the truth, the brother says, “Oh, I didn’t look at the time!”
This incident really happened to me in class. I caught one of the brighter students whispering the correct answer in a finals oral exam. Since I caught him, his friend got a zero in the orals and I had him suspended. When he was brought before the disciplinary board, his excuse was, “Our school’s motto is that ‘we must be men of service.’ I was only being of service.”
Perhaps we too are like this bright boy! Many times we shyly excuse our actions to God by saying, I really was not being totally honest but I was honest enough!
My friends, we do not qualify honesty. We are honest, or we are not honest. So don’t say I love you if you don’t mean it. You may break somebody’s heart or your own.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on July 22, 2012.