Maybe you have two friends. They both tell you the truth, but one feels warm and caring, while the other girl’s “truth” cuts deep. When you all try out for the track team, Girlfriend #1 says to you, “You’re a natural for long distance running. You hardly broke a sweat running the mile!” Fake Friend #2 also speaks the truth. “You know, your short legs are stubby, so don’t even think about hurdles. You’ll fall flat on your face.” Both girls spoke the truth, but only one spoke the truth in love.
What are some signs of growth in believers? They speak words of truth, but in a loving manner. They aren’t brutal, then claim, “I’m just telling the truth. Don’t be so touchy.” Their love is also honest. “Love must be sincere.” (Romans 12:9 TNIV) No faking allowed! True Christian love is open and genuine, not two-faced and phony. A growing Christian backs up her loving words with action. “Let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” (1 John 3:18 NKJV) As you grow, let love guide you—in your thoughts, words, and actions.