Are you free to tell the truth? Can you always say what you know to be true, not just a "version" or representation of truth? If you cannot freely answer a question, are you free to say "That is not something I can (or will) discuss now?" Are you free to say "I don't know", or "I'm not sure"? Are you afraid of telling the truth, afraid of a consequence of acknowledging and speaking only what is real?
Those questions popped into my mind as I read this paragraph from Rock My Soul, by bell hooks. bell hooks is not usually categorized as a Christian writer. Still, her comments on honesty and truthfulness are some of the most Christ-like comments I have read outside of Scripture:
"Our integrity is usually challenged not by dramatic moral decisions, but by the small decisions we must make daily about right and wrong, issues that require of us moral reflection. Too many folks believe that hypocrisy and dishonesty have no consequence. They may even see constant lying as a sign that they know how to play the game of success. Since the culture validates lying, there is rarely any outside force that challenges their behavior." --from Rock My Soul, by bell hooks.
I am a Christian. For me, God is that "outside force"-- the person, actually--who challenges me to always tell the truth. God challenges me to stay away from situations that would cause me to see a benefit in lying. God challenges me to trust His ability to work with truth, not against it. God challenges me to see things as they really are, thereby enabling me to speak of things as they really are.
God's forgiveness is not a permission slip to lie whenever it is convenient.
How much faith do I have in God? Do I have enough faith to relax and know this: if I speak what is real, God will take care of the rest? Am I free to tell the truth?