It’s important to bear with others, but it’s also important to tell the truth to each other. I love this story from a pastor in Florida:
As I sat with my family at a local breakfast establishment, I noticed a finely dressed man at an adjacent table. His Armani suit and stiffly pressed shirt coordinated perfectly with a “power” tie. His wing-tipped shoes sparkled from a recent shine. Every hair was in place, including his perfectly groomed mustache.
The man sat alone, eating a bagel, as he prepared for a meeting. As he reviewed the papers before him, he appeared nervous, glancing frequently at his Rolex watch. It was obvious he had an important meeting ahead.
The man stood up, and I watched as he straightened his tie and prepared to leave. Immediately, I noticed a blob of cream cheese attached to his finely groomed mustache. He was about to go into the world, dressed in his finest, with cream cheese on his face. I thought of the business meeting he was about to attend. Who would tell him? Should I? What if no one did?
I pushed my chair back and stood to warn him, but the tables were too close and the noise of the crowd too loud. He was at the door and on his way before I could stop him. Hopefully, the man looked in the mirror when he got into his car and saved himself from embarrassment.
C.J. Mahaney comments:
The harsh reality is that we all have cream cheese on our faces; in fact, whether you’re aware of it or not, there’s cream cheese on your face right now. Others clearly see it. And you need their help to identify its presence.
We don’t choose between bearing with each other and telling the truth. We need both. To refuse to do either one is unloving. Sometimes telling each other the hard truth is the most loving thing we can do.