Honesty is better than politeness. - Cyrus
I've heard this a couple of times. One example is when someone asks you "How are you?"
The polite answer: I'm fine, thanks.
The honest answer: (well, this depends on how you actually are. Be honest!)
By answering with the polite answer, you've missed an opportunity to connect with the person who asked you how you were.
So after I heard this idea, I tried answering questions honestly, rather than politely.
That didn't go too well. Some of my honest answers weren't helpful to the person who had asked me the question. Sometimes, what I was thinking and said honestly was the wrong thing to say and it was hurtful to the person I said it to.
The thing is that while honesty is important, it's not the most important thing. When asked about the greatest commandment, the two commandments that Jesus talked about shared a common theme: Love.
So my modified statement is that honesty is better than politeness, but it has to be honesty tempered with love. Honesty tempered by fear is politeness (I'll say the truth unless it will make you not like me), but honesty tempered with love says "How can I build up my brother or sister in Christ?"
Ideally, in the end, our thoughts will all be ones of love, and we will be able to speak honestly without thinking about tempering our words with love - our words will be of love just because that's what is in our hearts. But personally, I'm not there yet. My thoughts aren't all pure. But by God's grace, I'm learning to speak from love rather than from fear or other motives.
I am not the man I ought to be, I am not the man I wish to be, and I am not the man I hope to be, but by the grace of God, I am not the man I used to be. - John Newton (paraphrased)
Honesty + Love > Politeness
S. D. G.