“You’re wrong.” Those are words that no one likes to hear, really. You’re wrong in your approach to that pitch, wrong in how you’re trying to field that ball, wrong in how you’re coaching your team, wrong for playing dirty, wrong for cheating, wrong.

It’s never easy to hear we’re wrong, but each of us needs people who will tell us the truth. Why? Because the truth is powerful. The truth helps us see what we can’t see about ourselves, our play, our coaching. The truth is vital to our growth on and off the field.

Those who have come to love the truth hate it when people aren’t straight with them. They hate it when people lie, cheat, or won’t tell the whole truth.

Proverbs 13:5 highlights the difference between those who love the truth and those who don’t–“A righteous man hates falsehood, but a wicked man acts disgustingly and shamefully.”

The whole of Scripture reinforces this–those who walk with Jesus love the truth because it is the truth that has set them free from the penalty and power of their sin. As a person gets to know Jesus more and more, falsehood cannot live in him. He comes to be a person of the truth, even when the truth hurts.

A player or coach of truth speaks honestly to those around him. Anchored in the Scripture, he has a compass that never changes and, therefore, his truth never changes. He can be honest with himself and others in a consistent manner.

A player or coach of truth expects honesty from those around him. This player doesn’t want to be told he’s doing a good job when he’s not. This coach surrounds himself with people who will tell him he’s out of line. They don’t fear the truth; they hunger for it.

A player or coach of truth cultivates honesty in those around him. Over time, he helps establish a culture in which players, coaches, and parents are shown and told the truth in a loving way and in which honesty is never avoided for political or fearful reasons.

Love the truth. It will set you free.

Lord Jesus, thank you for telling me the truth about who I am (a sinner) and what I have done (sinned). Without your honesty, I would still be lost. Make me a player or coach of truth, no matter the cost. Amen.