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Authentic Truth

In this post, let's focus on “truth,” as it is the third essential of authentic leadership. Truth always intersects with grace (love), the two inseparably linked together.

We have seen his glory… full of grace and truth (1:14). Later Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life… (14:6) .

With these words, Jesus gives a lesson in leadership to two of his disciples, Thomas and Peter. Thomas questions him here, without apology, and is about to doubt his authenticity. And Peter will momentarily deny him with a lie. Doubt and denial.

The person who trusts me will not only do what I’m doing but even greater things (14:12).

Trust and Truth are two other inseparables. It is impossible to trust a leader whose life does not radiate truth in both action and word. I’ve witnessed too many leaders whose actions belie their words without them even realizing it, totally oblivious to the effect it’s having upon their leadership credibility.

For example, I have sat under the holiness teaching of many, and witnessed the inconsistency between word and deed of many of the many up close and personal. In some instances the teaching has been superb, textbook brilliant, eloquent, whilst off the platform, the relation between “thought, emotion, and behavior” too often extremely disappointing.

In fact, as a young officer, when appointed to the Brengle Holiness Institute, I graciously declined, citing appointment conflicts, which was the truth. The other part of the truth was, that I knew some of the holiness teachers too well, deciding that it would not be beneficial for my soul and spirit to attend.

Not to fault anyone, as corporately, without even recognizing it, we all suffer from these periodic bouts of “holiness” schizophrenia: “(in general use) a mentality or approach characterized by inconsistent or contradictory elements” (idictionary).

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth (1 John 3:18).

With Jesus, there are no 50 shades of truth, it’s either black or white, false or true, no grays, no compromising for self preservation, no rationalization for self gain or glory; it’s all or eternal nothing at all. When it comes to truth, the end doesn’t justify the means. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. No more metaphors, please!

One more and I’m finished. God's Word is a lamp, a light that illuminates the darkness. “Light” is a metaphor for “truth.” John the Baptist is the quintessential leadership role model in this respect.

There once was a man, his name John, sent by God to point out the way to the Life-Light. He came to show everyone where to look, who to believe in. John was not himself the Light; he was there to show the way to the Light (John 1:6-8).

Caution! Oftentimes, when rising to the leadership grandeurs of rank or position, that perennial liar, Satan, will deceptively shade the truth in 50 different ways, so attractively that many of us will begin to bask in the limelight rather than pointing to the true Light. Slowly and subtly, his lies become our lies leading to self-glory!

“Love, grace and mercy transcends laws and tradition. Gospel truth frees us from the yoke of the ceremonial law, and the more grievous burdens of the traditions of the elders”—Matthew Henry.

And you shall know the truth,

and the truth shall make you free (John 8:23).


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