This past Sunday at church, my pastor touched on a subject that really resonates with me. The subject? Deception. I think this subject resonates with me, because sometimes I feel like I’m pulling the wool over everyone’s eyes.
Tell me, do you have things you stay quiet about while amongst the body of Christ? Things that you struggle with, experienced, or is apart of you? Whether it’s something small, like liking Harry Potter, or something huge like a habitual sin you can’t break?
I’m going to be honest with you. I struggle with images. I want to be viewed as this good, godly, sweet, and innocent girl. So, yeah. I will stay quiet about anything that might disrupt that image. Because I don’t want my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ to view me as anything else.
But here is the thing about that, I’m not being completely genuine. I’m not being completely real. Am I?
I have dark humor, at times it can be a bit morbid. I absolutely love Pennywise, Freddy Krueger, and Michael Myers. I’m a Slytherin. I used to have suicidal ideation (I don’t anymore, I haven’t for 5 years now). I don’t always listen to the best music. And yeah, sometimes I struggle with lustful thoughts.
But I’m sick and tired of the idea that I as a Christian need to hold up this certain image. How am I ever going to help spread and shine The Good News when I am not being real?!
For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.Romans 12:3
Honest and accurate self-evaluation comes by knowing the basis of our self-worth – our identity in Christ.
It is my own selfishness that I want people to view me a certain way. It is my pride. But before God, I am a sinner. A sinner that can be saved only by God’s grace. But l am saved and therefore have great worth in God’s kingdom! I’m not going to let selfishness and pride get in the way.
Neither should you! It’s time to become genuine. It’s really the only way we can be of use to God. Because, not one of us is perfect. Church is not for the perfect. It’s for those with a past, for those struggling, for those growing.
Do you see someone struggling with something that you yourself keep hidden? Instead of putting up an image of yourself that says you don’t deal with something like that, come along side them.
For example, in my case, I could come alongside someone who’s depressed. Or someone who’s struggling with these lustful thoughts. I can come alongside someone who was just put down for liking something that another Christian deems inappropriate.
Because, honestly we’re all on different walks with God in our life. And really, the more we grow in him, the more we’ll notice when the Holy Spirit convicts us about something. “You shouldn’t be listening to this music,” “you should really turn off that possession movie,” “this, this is a sinful act/thought you’re dealing with,” etc.
So, no. I think it’s best to be genuine. Be real. Only then can we impact another’s life for the better. Only then can the Good Lord use us effectively to bring people to him.