Our spouses become one of the most important and influential people to us on our daily journeys. They can guide us as we navigate through life, they can hold us back, or they can keep us stationary. We may wish to protect them, or we may even wish to hurt them emotionally. But, what do they deserve, regardless of how they treat us? We need to ensure we give them the honest truth, always.
There are always two sides to the coin. In this instance, there is the side of the person who is either telling or not telling the whole truth and there is the person who is trusting the words of their spouse. I am mainly focusing on the side of the person telling or not telling the whole, honest truth in this post.
Why would we withhold the honest truth?
There are many reasons why we may want to omit details, embellish, or lie to our spouses.
When they are stressed out, maybe we withhold news in order to save them from more stress on their plate. But, what if they find out down the road? Then they are dealing with the news and their stress and the fact that that you didn’t tell them. Perhaps they feel betrayed or hurt or angry over this instance because their stress heightens their emotions.
Maybe we are flawed and try and hide our personal flaws. It could be an addiction, spending habits, where we spend our time, etc. This is an especially dangerous one. When your spouse finds out, they may feel angry, betrayed, saddened, they may lose their faith and trust in you. These can start small, but they usually slowly snowball. A little white lie here, another there, and soon the situation spirals out of control. (The longer you hide these, the harder it may become to forgive).
Maybe your spouse has hurt you, so you react with anger. You embellish your words to hurt them and return the pain. These words can pierce like a blade and can hurt more than you realize. These words may hurt your relationship and have lasting consequences.
If you get laid off or fired from work, it may be easier to hide the details or alter the details to save your spouse the stress and heartache. We are looking to protect the emotions of our spouse. If your spouse finds out later, though, they may trust you less or wonder what else you have misled them to believe.
There are many reasons and motives to mislead your spouse. This is not a comprehensive list, just a small sampling of the millions of reasons we could have. While it may, at times, seem justifiable, and some are out of selfish motive, it is not okay to mislead your spouse.
Whatever our motives or intentions are, it is never worth misleading, withholding, or embellishing the truth. Our spouses deserve the whole, honest truth. Every. Single. Time.
We need to act in love. We need to remember why we married our spouse.
No matter the actions of our spouse, we should act in love. We need to be honest with them and ourselves and treat our relationship with respect.
(If there is abuse in your relationship, that is a completely different matter! Please seek help and professional advise if this applies to you. Please. You are worth it.)
Reasons why your spouse deserves the honest truth
- It is very clear that God’s Word tells us not to lie or deceive others.
11 ‘You shall not steal, nor deal deceptively, nor lie to one another. — Leviticus 19:11 AMP
- There is scripture throughout the bible to support this. Our God represents truth and purity, it is no wonder that he detests lying and deception.
- Safeguards your marriage when marital stressors arise.
- When we lie, our spouses lose faith in us. Over time a marriage can deteriorate from this. On the flip side, when we are completely honest with our spouses and have active communication, we can work to ensure that the needs of both sides are being met.
- It also creates a level of trust with our spouse so when difficult situations arise, we may be able to trust in our spouses as we navigate that new terrain.
- We should aim to build our spouses up.
29 Do not let unwholesome [foul, profane, worthless, vulgar] words ever come out of your mouth, but only such speech as is good for building up others, according to the need and the occasion, so that it will be a blessing to those who hear [you speak]. — Ephesians 4:29 AMP
- We need to build up and encourage our spouses. As long as they trust in and rely on us, it gives our relationships nurturing. Do not let this passage fool you to think that we need to only say positive things to our spouse. Lies are unwholesome. Deception is detestable (Proverbs 12:22). Sometimes the truth may hurt, but it keeps the marriage pure.
- Read more: 40 ways to build up and encourage your spouse
- To promote trust and security.
- When there are no lies and deceit and open communication, typically it allows trust to blossom in the relationship. As we trust our spouses, we gain a sense of security in our relationship. Feeling secure that your spouse will not cheat, that your spouse will share their flaws, that your spouse will confide in you (etc) is such a liberating feeling. It takes a relationship to new heights.
- Creates openness in the relationship.
- This couples with the above. As you share all of your flaws, all of the difficult aspects of life, and all of the silly details of life, you have the opportunity to deepen and strengthen your relationship.
- It allows you to grow together.
- To further develop the above, as you share all the small details, the big ones, and everything in between, you and your spouse can grow together as you navigate through life’s path. Your lives start to intertwine more and more. You can work together to tackle flaws, challenges, and share in all successes together.
- Freedom from guilt.
31 Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” — John 8:31-32
- In this passage, Jesus explore that if we follow His teachings (all of them, including loving your neighbour, or spouse, as yourself and being honest and not deceitful), then we will know our God and the truth He speaks. He will set us free.
- If we look at the basic premise of what he says, it also works. The truth will set you free. Free from guilt. Free from so much.
- Works to create a stronger bond.
- As you and your spouse share the whole, honest truth and you work to eliminate all omissions, lies, and/or embellishments, your bond is likely to grow. The stronger your bond, the less likely you will feel to need to lie, omit, or deceive your spouse. You will develop the desire to share the honest truth so your spouse can help you through a challenge or they can celebrate a triumph. The stronger your bond, the more ready you are to tackle everything you face as a single unit. After all, God created marriage to join two as one flesh (Ephesians 5:31). We need to strive to build our relationships in a way that we can function as one flesh.