Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Handling the Truth

Earlier this month, I adventurously dared take the time to try on a few blouses from the clearance rack. The result was a wailing chorus from the stroller of strapped-in discontent, loud enough for half the store to hear.

Then came Wyatt with his Joan Rivers impersonation. As soon as I slipped the cobalt and emerald green blouse over my head, he said, "Mommy! You look Awwwwwful!"

Thankfully, the twins' escalating disapproval covered what was probably several ladies snickering in the other dressing rooms.

The truth.

It's a daily problem in this season of my life, teaching my almost four-year-old Wyatt to always tell the truth, that lies make mommy and Jesus said. I should have guessed my child would pick the dressing room as his chance to practice what I've been preaching. The rest of the time, he's been reluctant to be so blatantly honest.

For instance, Wyatt has now matured to the point where he understands the true value of siblings--they are great scape goats! In better news, though, he has yet to master the art of the lie. Wyatt has so many tells, it's not hard to identify a lie from the God's honest truth.

Sometimes, he'll blame a crime on Emerson, not realizing Emerson has been reading books with me the entire time the supposed incident happened.

Then one day, he ran halfway across the house to find me. "Mommy, mommy! Amelia's doing something naughty! You have to come punish her!"

This is not an unusual scenario. And generally, the twins are being more than a little naughty. This time, the red crayon scribbles on the kitchen tile floor were a testament to extreme naughtiness.

Squatting down by Amelia's chair, I began to fuss at her only to see her eyes glaze over with a blank stare. It was obvious she had no idea what I was talking about.

And that's when I noticed the crayon in question was by Wyatt's chair, not hers.

After a little prodding and reminders about the consequences of lying, he confessed.

It's a battle, not just with him, but with my own mind and soul. I try to tell him that the truth is always better than a lie. But in the back of my mind, I hear Jack Nicholson from A Few Good Men with Jack Nicholson yelling, "You can't handle the truth!"

And if I'm honest with myself, I don't always want to hear the truth. Sometimes, I'd prefer a little white lie so I can go on without any worry, fear, or need to make changes.

It's not that I want to be lied to. I just don't want to be bothered with a truth that's different from the one I have already created in my mind.

My husband and a certain re-purposed hall table can attest to this fact.

And so can my heavenly Father.

Interesting, isn't it--an almost thirty year difference in age, but Wyatt and I are both the same, learning to embrace the honest, complete truth.


  1. There was some study recently (within the last few months, I think) that indicated that people lie on an average of 3 times during a 10-minute conversation. Yikes ...

  2. Wow. That's pretty scary, especially when other studies I've read place Christians right in line with doing what the "average" person does.