Does Honesty Really Open Our Hearts to Others?

In what ways does being honest about the struggles and trials, as well as the joys and celebrations, of the Christian life help you open your heart to others?*

This question plagued me as I worked through this week’s Bible study.

Most of my young life, I’ve felt it was just good sense to share success rather than failure. I wouldn’t tell my family that I had a job interview…until after I got the job. I wouldn’t tell them about a big exam…until I clipped the A on our fridge. This behavior was/is typical among all of us. An immediate family member actually had a minor surgery once without sharing that information beforehand! You know, share the joy, excitement, and success. Why bother sharing the pitfalls along the way?


I’ve come to realize more and more in my adult life that this is not good sense, in fact, it is the opposite. This is not to say we need to share EVERY failure or success; wallow or boast. Rather, editing what others see of us limits the depth and intimacy of relationships, while stifling our authentic selves.

So, to answer the question:

Being honest to and about ourselves, opens our hearts to others because it is only vulnerability that leads to real relationship. If we cannot admit our own brokenness, how will we ever be able to accept anyone else’s?

Which leads me to thinking…

If we are not humble enough to admit to ourselves and others that we are not perfect and in fact stumble quite a bit, then how could we honestly access and humbly admit our need for a Savior?

Part of the passage I was working through this week was 2 Corinthians 6:3-13. It offers depth of insight to Paul’s remarkable struggles and joys throughout his Christian journey, but the final verses wrap it all up and display the example we are to take away…

…dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.We have spoken freely to you, Corinthians, and opened wide our hearts to you. We are not withholding our affection from you, but you are withholding yours from us. As a fair exchange—I speak as to my children—open wide your hearts also.” 2 Corinthians 6:9(b)-13

By openly sharing his trials and joy, what he is really doing is offering them his authentic self. In his sharing, he is relating to others and encouraging that they open up their hearts and be vulnerable. (There is a ton more to the background of this passage, so this is not a conclusive overview of why he is writing to the Corinthians)

Vulnerability might not be easy or well-received, but it does tear off our illusion of perfection. And what does one receive in return? For better or worse, at least there is real relationship!

*Study of 2 Corinthians by N.T. Wright

What is your answer to the opening question?

~ Becca

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5 Responses to Does Honesty Really Open Our Hearts to Others?
  1. Becky
    February 25, 2014 | 4:44 am

    I found your blog doing some late night surfing and your “about me” caught my attention immediately and I have loved looking through your posts and seeing your heart for the Lord. I would say my answer to the opening question is that being honest with others shows my incredible need for Christ. By showing my imperfections, I can brag about his perfection making me new.

    • Becca V
      February 25, 2014 | 8:19 pm

      Hi Becky! I’m so glad you found me and said hello! Thank you for your kind words. I agree; it can be really hard for me to be vulnerable and admit (or even know) what exactly I’m feeling, but ultimately it leads to my own dependence on God and deeper relationships with others.

  2. Katie
    February 28, 2014 | 6:54 pm

    I really enjoyed this- because this is the cry of my heart. I recently returned to blogging after an extended hiatus- and the reason I started blogging in the first place is because I long for authenticity among women. It is something I write about often. I firmly believe that women, friends and bloggers should be able to write freely, share their hearts, and do so without fear of condemnation or ridicule from others. Thanks for your post- it’s nice to read something from someone that so closely mirrors my own thoughts! I found you on the Friday Favorites blog hop.

    • Becca V
      February 28, 2014 | 7:59 pm

      Hi Katie. I’m glad you found me and thank you for your kind words. I agree…womanhood, motherhood, working, writing…life in general is a challenge for everyone, we can bring one another down or walk alongside to build up. We all might tear down without even knowing it, but our own humility towards ourselves and others lives out the Grace Jesus offers us and we all so deeply NEED and desire!

  3. […] Between the sermon series, my Bible Study, and real life relationships, I keep getting smacked in the face on the topic and importance of vulnerability. […]