HONESTY IS THE BEST POLICY is the topic for my blog today. With so many issues in our current campaign about trustworthiness and honesty or the lack of it, and no; I am not going to make a political statement but I want to discuss how I value honesty over any consideration for lying. I had rather someone be honest than try to skirt a basic question. The following quotation is simply true and I wish the author’s name had been retained but I am sure a lot of frank people have thought or said it at one time or other.
Truth fears no questions. ~Unknown
Here is a post I made a couple of years ago and you can see how honesty has infiltrated my family’s history and it is a value we cherish.
“Honesty is the thought for the day. We were a family of common means but we were rich in so many ways. We were taught to be honest, respectful of others, and had good working ethics instilled in our upbringing. Of course, we were normal children and did the same things that average kids did. What we were taught was the consequences of our actions, so honesty paid off. With those lessons came values. As I grew up, it became a natural habit to say it like it is. Being honest does not mean you have to be cruel as the truth does hurt sometimes; a good partner with honesty is respect. A person can be honest with someone to help them but respect for their “soul” is important to maintain relationships, either in personal or business life. Now for the message behind these thoughts…..Are we being honest with ourselves? When something happens in our lives, are we taking responsibility or do we try to put the blame on someone else, circumstances, work, or the world? The first step in being honest, is being honest with ourselves and God. I had to get “really honest” at a point in my life to see exactly what I needed to change and I do it on a regular basis, honestly!!”
Our Mother told us a story about how determined her Father was in instilling honesty in his children. While I recount this episode, there is a lesson for parents as well as children. Here is how I remember this emotional story:
” My sister and I were walking down the road from our house when we saw our neighbor out in his yard. He asked us how we were doing and, as silly girls, we laughed and said we were doing good. He looked over to a big pear tree loaded with those golden pears and asked us if we wanted some pears. Of course, we said yes and he told us to pick up all of the pears which had fallen. We went crazy picking up as many as we could hold in our dresses without showing our undies and thanked him. We laughed and giggled all of the way back down the road and could imagine the pear preserves our Momma could make with those pears after we picked a few out to eat. As we came into the yard, we were met by our Daddy who asked us where we got those pears. We told him about our neighbor giving us permission to pick them up. Daddy didn’t believe us and told us we stole them. We kept saying No, he gave them to us and no matter how many times we told him, he got madder thinking we were lying. He proceeded to take his belt off and spanked us. We didn’t understand why he thought we lied. After he spanked us, he made us gather the pears up and walked back down to the neighbor’s house. The neighbor heard us crying as we put the pears on the ground and walked over to Daddy and asked what was wrong. Daddy said I am making them bring back your pears they stole and the neighbor explained he had told us it was okay to get the ones that had fallen. Daddy felt ashamed and offered for us to take the pears. You can believe me, my sister and I didn’t want those pears. No money on earth could have made us pick those pears up. It is a wonder I can eat a pear now.”
While this story is a hard story to hear. My Mother never forgot the consequences she faced when her Daddy thought they lied. Yes, he was wrong but he left an impression she and her sister never forgot. I am not agreeing with his method but in those days, honesty was not an option; it was a requirement. While I advocate honesty, I choose first to believe someone until they are proven to be untrustworthy. In all things, be honest. It costs nothing and is a priceless virtue. Honestly, it pays to be honest.