Wednesday, February 10, 2010
I have been pondering the idea of authenticity for the last couple of weeks. Here are a few of the reasons why:
1. I observe people all around me that feel they have to wear a mask in order to be safely accepted in their everyday lives.
2. I see judgmental people tear others down and make it very unsafe to show who they really are.
3. I know personally those who have a great need to share what really goes in their lives but find no one with which to do this, because once again it is not safe.
And lest we in the Church, think it is not that way with us,
all of the above things are within the church body.
So what must occur so that true authenticity can occur in the Body of Christ?
That is the question that has been plaguing my heart.
As I searched the scriptures, I found two examples of what I see as true authenticity.
Let me share them with you.
The first is from John 8:3-11 in the account of the woman caught in the act of adultery.
John 8:3-11 The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught committing adultery. They made her stand in front of everyone
and asked Jesus, "Teacher, we caught this woman in the act of adultery.
In his teachings, Moses ordered us to stone women like this to death. What do you say?"
They asked this to test him. They wanted to find a reason to bring charges against him. Jesus bent down and used his finger to write on the ground.
When they persisted in asking him questions, he straightened up and said, "The person who is sinless should be the first to throw a stone at her."
Then he bent down again and continued writing on the ground.
One by one, beginning with the older men, the scribes and Pharisees left. Jesus was left alone with the woman.
Then Jesus straightened up and asked her, "Where did they go? Has anyone condemned you?"
The woman answered, "No one, sir." Jesus said, "I don't condemn you either. Go! From now on don't sin."
The woman in this account, was at a very difficult point in her life. Her dark secret was revealed. She was hopeless. Jesus was there. He knew exactly what she had done. And yet, He meets her right where she is, deals with her accusers, and then sends her on her way with the encouragement to change her life.
If you met that woman today, what character in that passage would you be most like?
Are you an accuser, looking to find fault in everyone you meet? (unsafe)
Are you like Jesus, willing to step in the gap and walk with someone to help them change their life,
regardless of the sin committed? (safe)
Only when we act like Jesus do we create a safe place for authenticity to take place and God's grace to shine.
Authenticity will only come when we start acting like Jesus.
Here is what I find;
Christ and Him alone is the only way authenticity can be reached.
If we are growing in His grace,
accomplishing His mission,
becoming more and more like Him everyday,
then we will see things with His heart,
and extend His grace.
We will put aside
OUR need to be right,
OUR right to avenge wrongs,
and OUR need to show HOW GOOD WE ARE,
to surrender to Jesus.
Can it be done?
I have only seen it twice in my own life.
Two people I can be totally authentic with.
Two people I feel TOTALLY safe with.
Tomorrow I will share the second example I found in scripture when an environment was created and true authenticity shown brightly.
I must decide if I desire true authenticity or desire to be self-centered.
I cannot have both.
I want to chase God's heart in this matter.
Chasing Their Hearts,