How can three words be so beautiful yet daunting at the same time? Days, months, even years of my life were spent associating an unpleasant feeling with these simple words. Reality was something to bring tenderness and stress, anything other than joy and freedom!
I’ve been asked what home feels like, and without a doubt I would have to say wonderful. Along with all the wonderful emotions of home, I would say home is fake. I came to a realization, both as a society and a culture we have adopted very fake and “surfacy” communication rituals. Not joking. The enlightenment of this was shocking for me and honestly quite embarrassing.
I realized how sad it is our relationships often aren’t deep, real, authentic relationships; conversations often are more pointless than motivating! So, I developed a new goal for myself.
I want to be real with people. No jokes or games, but beautiful honesty. Why? There’s a rising expectation that we need to be fake in order to be satisfactory, competent, and acceptable to society. After spending three months outside of the United States a harsh and overwhelming truth weighs on my heart: Loneliness and hurt is running rampant. In one week…SEVEN DAYS…I could get closer to individuals on the mission field than friends I’ve known for 3 years in the U.S.
The rush of our society is pushing us forward so fast it is hard to do our best at anything, including relationships. So called “relationships” are barely scratching the surface into anything worth crediting. Relationships should be a growing process yet many don’t get much past the simple “how are you doing” and un-descriptive “good” or “bad” responses. Friends, our days are not simply good or bad!!! We are experiencing new things daily, we have sad moments, happy moments, lonely moments, and so many other emotions in a day. Let’s try to dig a little deeper!! Let’s be real about our lives, struggles, joys, happiness, hurts, adventures, and everything else life is bringing our way. Don’t hide behind a mask of mediocracy; our days are so vastly different yet we all are struggling with things in life together. We don’t need to do it alone! We should have community.
It. is. so. important.
Why? Well, we can act like we have it all together, but when we do that everyone who is hurting feels alone, and we probably feel alone too. In others words, we often live our lives with a lack of community due to the fake cover we wear, a fake cover preventing us from uniting in deep relationships. Life gets dark and messy at times. The easy thing isn’t usually to be real. Reality can hurt so badly. I have to remember something extremely important though….Nobody can learn from my mistakes if I’m not willing to be vulnerable in sharing them.
Over the past three months it was a normal occurrence to share parts of my life with others. Whether it be the happy parts, or the deepest darkest secrets about my life struggles. A “comforting” thought always got me through when I got nervous……”ILL NEVER SEE THESE PEOPLE AGAIN”. Ouch. In essence, I tried to have confidence in sharing my failures with people using the reasoning that they would never see me again so they won’t judge me, right? Lord forgive me, I was so used to being fake that I felt comfortable being real with strangers but the need to be fake with my own community.
“An honest witness tells the truth, but a false witness tells lies.” Proverbs 12:17
How do we expect to further the kingdom of God without sharing his grace? How do we expect to show his grace unless we are also receiving it? How do we expect to show how amazing his grace is unless we are willing to share how desperately we need it?
“However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.” Acts 20:24
I think I am far more likely to further the Kingdom of God if I can show the grace of God. I can’t show that Grace unless I’m wiling to show that I need a lot of grace. Therefore, I need to be real with people. All people. The ones I see everyday, and the strangers on the street. Going 2,000 miles away to share what God has done for me means nothing if I’m not willing to do it in my own back yard. I can fake a good or mediocre day without explaining what all the day entailed, but community and true relationships unfold when we dig a little deeper.
Discuss our failures. Discuss our pains. Discuss our triumph. Discuss Gods grace. Discuss Gods love. Discuss the ugly and beautiful.
Just. Be. Real. When we are real a loving community comes along us; it is in that community that growth can begin. If you’re real with people I promise you’ll experience so much beauty and support.
Let’s. Be. Real.