Good Articulation does not make truth. The ability to shout down or argue better does not make truth. We live in an era of fake news and some say post truth or truthiness. So how are we to know truth? Truth is always tinged with love and never hate. People often want to say tough love is what someone needs. But their tough love is often not loving and therefore not truth.
I have trouble with those who are more concerned about borders and immigration laws than people. I do not think you speak truth if you care for a fetus you have never seen more than the mother you see. If you express your views always in harsh voices and derogatory comments about the other side you do not have truth. A Spanish philosopher once said being right is such a small thing. I would add to this it is what you do with the truth that matters. Do you use it to bludgeon others? Do you use it to control others? Do you use it for gain? Or do you use it to care for others? For truth is only the latter one is true.
You see in the end the articulate may have their way but if you act out of love you hold that which matters most. Love is always the greatest of all. Now someone will remind me that some good intentioned people do some bad things. But the one who really acts out of love will not say I am sorry only they will work to right their mistake. We can only do the best we can and when someone demonstrates that our best is wrong or hurting in love we try something new. Eventually through the ability to change and listen we will arrive at the right way. Sometimes our arrival may be later than most but the truth goes to the one who continues to seek it not to the complacent.
At certain times different groups of people have been leaders of truth but eventually they give it away. The African-Americans during the sixties and seventies were the prophetic communities. But the continual sexism, AIDS phobia and homophobia of the African-American community begin to make them as ever other group seeking power. Hopefully as more African-American women than men are graduates of colleges the community can return to hold the moral sway of a nation. Gay men briefly held the role in the nineties but their classism, misogyny, lost them this distinction. Latinos seem to hold it now but the machismo of their culture may ultimately cause them to lose this title.
As individuals our moral suasion can be powerful but we too can give it away. We can allow our prejudices to blind us to truth. We can allow our need for power and money to color our truth. We can allow our need for social status to create deaf ears to truth. We can allow our pride to rob us of our truth. It is easy to lose truth to so many things. A need to be right makes truth unable to penetrate our core of belief.
So in the end the truth you hold today may be gone tomorrow. It has to be rediscovered anew each day. And when discovered held onto with fierce determination and let loose with open hands when the time comes. Because our truths change or take on different nuances in different situations and times we find ourselves. This is probably what the Apostle Paul meant when he said ‘When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.’
This is the Holiday Season and on one of the holidays we celebrate a child’s birth who as a man bore truth. May we allow the Christ Child’s truth live and grow in us until the man’s truth is lived through us. So I am done and regretfully I cannot articulate it any better.