“But what will the neighbors think?” Or what will staff think, or my friends think, or any one of a hundred different people think?
We all say we don’t care what others think……….but we all know we do care. Authenticity has been on my mind a great deal lately.
Are we all so busy trying to be who we think we are supposed to be that we lose sight of who we really are?
Well, as someone who has had time lately to ponder this thought, I would have to say, yes.
We all want to be authentic and to a certain degree we usually are. But authenticity isn’t something we have or don’t have, to be authentic is to make a conscious choice of how we want to live, every single day. This is where it gets a little messy, throw a little self-doubt or shame in the game and you can sell yourself out in a nano-second and be anybody you need to be.
I’m quite certain that is not a quality trait.
Why is it that we are afraid to be imperfect and to be vulnerable? Why do we have trouble believing that we are, in and of ourselves, enough? I don’t know one person who at least to some degree does not try to be a good person and live a life defined by morality and integrity. Granted the degrees vary but I don’t know many people who wake up and say, I think I’ll do everything in my power today to make people think I am a lying snake in the grass and a despicable person.
How then do we get so darned off course?
I guess it depends on who you are asking. But am I asking the right question? If I can figure out who God made me to be it might be a great deal easier trying to live an authentic life.
Knowing who we are in Christ seems like a great place to start. These are the things God made us to be. I like to think that God loves us because of who we are, not in spite of who we are.
Complete in Him who is the head of all principality and power (Colossians 2:10)
Alive with power (Ephesians 2:5)
Free from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2)
Far from oppression and fear doesn’t come near me. (Isaiah 54:14)
Born of God and the evil one does not touch me.(1John 5:18)
I am Holy and without blame (Ephesians 1:4)
I have the mind of Christ and the peace of God that surpasses all understanding (1 Corinthians 2:15)
I have the Greater One living in me, I have received the gift of righteousness, I have received the spirit of wisdom. I can do all things through Christ Jesus. (1 John 4:4)
Perfectionism, forget it because by ourselves we cannot attain it. Becoming perfect is not a quick self-improvement project, perfectionism is more like trying over and over to earn approval and acceptance and never quite attaining it. To strive for perfectionism is to concentrate on what I accomplish and how well I accomplish it.
God offers the easier way. As long as I am trying, as long as I am seeking guidance and wisdom from my Father I know I am heading in the right direction. That does not mean that everyone is going to agree with every decision I make or that I am always going to know exactly what to do. It does mean that God is guiding this journey I am on and no matter what happens on my way to living an authentic life, I can count on Him to be the one who shows me what authenticity looks like.
It is not I who live, but Christ lives in me (Galatians 2:20).
………………….and so I ride