Take off the Plastic
There are times where I feel like there are a million different thoughts fighting for my attention inside of my head. It starts with something as simple as looking at a picture, but quickly and rampantly turns into a question of purity in my mind. Our world is so broken. It has always been clear that we are living in a fallen place, but these days when I look around I don't recognize very much of what I see.
Growing up, I was taught to look for the good in everyone and in every situation. I was told to believe that people were good and that no one would intentionally harm me or act maliciously. Kind of a 'you get what you give' mentality, and that as long as my heart was in the right place no foul would come my way. It was great in theory, but it simply was not reality. I'm not sure that reality has ever existed. Even in the Garden of Eden there was a serpent whose full intent was to harm and destroy.
I say all of this to get to this. Temptation is real. Sin is our nature and though our thoughts and minds may be willing our flesh will fail. Again and again. I fail daily in some way or another. I find ways around the promises I've made to God, the things I've vowed to give up or do better with. I spend too much time on things that don't matter and not enough time with Him; there's never enough time with Him. I am disobedient, and I look too long and lustfully after things and men sometimes. I'm ashamed to type that, but even more ashamed that it's more fearful to admit it to you than to know that The Lord already knew it.
So much of what we do as Christian women is motivated by what we think we should do as Christian women.
I could write all day about the ways that I fall short and share the struggles and wars that are waging in my spirit regularly, but very rarely do I sit down with a friend and truly spill my heart. We put ourselves together. We wear the smile. We repeat typical cliche phrases and share our inspirational verses on social media but how much authenticity are we really giving each other? I would venture to say that the majority of Christian women today would say that they don't feel that they have very many true friends that they could share their most intimate struggles and fears with.
There is a way to change this. Take off the plastic. Remove the yellow tape, knock down the walls and let someone in. The Lord is our anchor, He is the only one who will truly know every part of us, however He created us to live in relationships and community. We don't have to word it perfectly or appear like we've got it all together. All we need to do is be the person that He made us to be, and there's really not anything more simple than that.
Your authenticity will never go unnoticed if you wear it at all times. Be you. Just you.
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!
As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
Love one another with brotherly affection. Out do one another in showing honor.