“Stop beating around the bush, and just say what you mean.” The origin of this phrase is found in a centuries-old practice of hiring men with clubs to beat bushes to drive out animals during a hunt. A bush beater who seems not to be particularly motivated to get to the point of the hunt – namely, rustling out the sought-after game – might be said to be “beating around the bush” in a lackluster and time-wasting way.
As we commonly use this idiom to describe people who are not not saying what they really mean, the importance of being direct is all the more important. Yet the stakes are higher.
In our current social and political circumstance, direct communication feels harder than ever. People are too easily offended. The truth is not rightly understood or prioritized.
Cancel culture and the psychological forces which contributed to its rise in America, even where we may not recognize – these would have us all bowing and scraping and praying to the mob to not destroy our careers and social lives.
But the truth must enjoy an unwavering commitment from Christians because we serve and worship a God who commands such. Moreover, Christ our Savior calls himself not only true in some general sense, but “the Truth.”
Like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah in the Old Testament book of Daniel, we can in our day expect to be resented and even persecuted for excellence in word and deed. Yet there is a God in Heaven who sees and rewards those who faithfully serve him, and those who are unwavering in their obedience to the Most High will never be put to shame.
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