Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor. (Romans 12:9-10)
Hypocrisy is deceptive. It’s dishonest. And dishonesty hurts. It damages relationships and is cancerous to the dishonest person. You may not be able to be absolutely certain someone is being deceptive, but you can be absolutely certain when you are. Control what you can control. Sure, you should also steer others toward righteousness, including trustworthiness, so if you get the opportunity, love others by holding them accountable…but be sure to hold yourself to a high standard of truthfulness.
Let me be honest about hypocrisy and dishonesty.
I’ve lied to others to make myself look better. Ironic, isn’t it? In the process of trying to impress someone, I’ve lessened not only my image but the person I am. Putting on a façade might give you momentary recognition, but it takes away a piece of your authenticity.
I’ve lied to others to make myself feel better. Again, ironic. Perhaps I felt better about the specific situation, but the lying itself made me feel worse. There goes another piece of my authenticity.
I’ve lied to myself. Ah, the many lies about my motivations, intentions, consistency, dreams…and the list goes on! And then there are the lies I’ve wanted others to tell. After all, do I really want to hear the truth when I ask how I look in my new outfit or if my hair looks good, or am I looking for affirmation in any way?
When we love without hypocrisy, we love with authenticity. We don’t distort it, rationalize it, or excuse it. We don’t call something love that isn’t love. We don’t misuse love. And if we are only seeking and living God’s love out loud, it will always be authentic. We don’t make God’s love hypocritical. We just live it out so that it looks that way.
We’re not going to live God’s love perfectly, but we can certainly live it out as authentically as possible. And that takes honesty. Most important, it takes honesty with God. We have to humbly ask Him what love is and boldly trust Him when He prompts us to live it out.
God’s love is authentic. Our lives are not. But they can be increasingly so. The way to rid ourselves and our lives of hypocrisy is to focus on authenticity. When we focus on God’s love, any distortion of it will fall away. Focus on the truth to get rid of all untruth.
Dear God, I long to live Your love without hypocrisy. I want to abhor what is evil in Your sight and cling to what is good in Your ways. Get rid of all hypocrisy in my life by showing me Your truth. I want to live Your love with authenticity, reflecting You in all I say and do.