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  • Sam Salerno

Truth: Even If It Costs You

Updated: Jul 22, 2018


As far as favorite movies go, Kingdom of Heaven is pretty high up there on my list. 

It’s got knights, swords, blood, catapults, battles, a hot princess…oh, and a lot of good principles, too.


I’ll skip the summary so you can watch it for yourself (because you should), but there’s one scene that I want to spoil because it’s just THAT good. 

A dying knight has summoned his son so he can bless him, commission him, and pass on his title as Baron before his death. As his son kneels before him, the knight shakily stands to his feet and gives one of the coolest commissions I’ve ever heard (and I think every man would benefit hearing this from a father figure at some point in their life):

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.

Be brave and upright that God may love thee.

Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.

Safeguard the helpless and do no wrong – that is your oath.

**SLAP**

And that is so you remember it.


Super simple. Super potent. And a bloody nose that seals it in your mind.


I could dissect this whole thing, but it’s the third line’s been running through my head on repeat, and it’s what this post is about.


Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.


Have you seen those paintings of personified Lady Truth? She’s usually this drop-dead gorgeous babe with porcelain skin, crystal green eyes, long flowing locks, and an alluring glow that knocks your socks off. She stands there staring into your soul, reminding you that the truth can set you free if you are willing to speak it. She's angelic, and if life were like a State Farm commercial and speaking the truth led to her showing up right next to me to tell me I did the right thing, I’d be sure to tell the truth more often 😉

 

But the truth is, I don’t have the greatest track record of holding hands with Lady Truth. I wouldn’t go so far to say that I’m a liar, but I also can’t let myself off the hook and say that I’m not a liar. Sometimes, omitting the truth is way more comfortable than speaking it; sometimes, letting truth slide is often easier than facing it. (My last two sentences are my case and point).

Why is that?


Some people say that the truth can be an ugly thing, and no one wants to face the ugly. As I was writing about it this morning, though, I realized that truth isn’t ugly at all. Remember the Truth Babe in the last paragraph? She’s beautiful! The ugly thing is that we decide to lock Lady Truth out on the porch when her beauty makes us look bad or feel uncomfortable. Having truth around can be awkward. Truth can hurt. Truth can cause division. Truth can breaks hearts. Truth can even lead to your death. And I’ve yet to meet someone who prefers hurt to comfort, division to unity, heartache to…not…heartache(?), or death to life. 


So if truth does this, if it feels uncomfortable and painful, why should we make it our imperative to be honest at all costs?


First off, it’s the right thing to do (for multiple reasons that this little space couldn’t hold if it tried).


Second off, it’s the right thing to do because it is only by being truthful and honest, with ourselves and others, that we can be truly known; and only when we are truly known can we be truly loved.


We can’t really love things we don’t know. Likewise, we can’t really love others if we don’t know them. By hiding our flaws and keeping our secrets, not only do we keep ourselves locked in a cage of fear of being found out, but we are also keeping ourselves from being truly known and, subsequently, truly loved.


Is it possible to always speak the truth? With an extreme level of tact of appropriateness, I think it's possible.


Is it easy? Nope. Being known to your core is never a comfortable thing, but it’s a good thing. 


Truth expels fear, builds trust, and makes room for real love.

It might hurt or be awkward at first, but it can lead to the greatest level of comfort and happiness.


Speak the truth, even if it leads to your death.


*Cheers to the Truth Babe*

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