March 2, 2013

Who's Holding the Scales?

Instagram. Picasa. With all the photo editing software and apps there are out there I am surprised how many people do not edit out the background clutter in their snapshots. While I do believe that we should not be persuaded by what others may think of us and still on the other hand I DO believe we should always present ourselves in a good light....... (Consistent both ON camera and OFF camera ;)) I wonder how many live the same life OFF Facebook as they do ON. I know we all have a tendency to put our best foot forward. It's human nature. We want to win the popularity vote. We WANT to have our act together or at least appear as though we do. I am guilty as charged. We all have been there at one time or another. Or we fall to the far other end. Not care at all and that too is a mark of pride. We are either afraid to show our faults and mistakes. We feel ashamed that we are actually----FALLIBLE. BROKEN. Make mistakes.                                                                       
                                                                                    
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We are HUMAN.

We live in this imperfect flesh. Pinterest. Facebook. While it's all so very brilliant:) (if used with wisdom and discretion).....it all presents an opportunity for comparison and a FALSE sense of reality. If you're not Betty Crocker, June Cleaver, a famous preacher or have not a single CREATIVE bone in your body you fall SHORT. But to WHO'S standards? WHO'S got the scales? Who's making the comparisons!?!?!
                               Certainly not GOD.
And when have we come to this place that those things are more important than living a life with consistent character, integrity and diligence!??!?! Being faithful with what's in front of us to do, being good stewards and raising our children to fear God and love and serve man?
Or that we have to be or at least to appear to be SO perfect that the smallest mistake or FLAW RENDERS US USELESS to the kingdom of God and those around us?!?!?!?!

I am reminded of the Pharisees: The Great Pretenders. I can only imagine that people pretended as much around the Pharisees as the Pharisees pretended themselves. The Pharisees had to be some of the LONELIEST people on earth. NOTHING they stood for. NOTHING they represented was in light of REALITY. The Pharisees sacrificed a LOT to maintain the image they held dear. They sacrificed relationship. No one could relate to them. They were out of touch with any sense of reality that most people faced day in and day out. Presenting a sense of perfection not only generates fear in our OWN hearts....it creates an intimidation in others. They cannot relate to us. We have a bunch of nice, out of touch with reality, fake relationships and nobody knows who we TRULY are. How often we do that with God Himself and His Son. We worship with a sense of pride and spirituality. We honor God with our lips but our hearts are far from Him. Matthew 15:8. It stings my pride to think of it, it breaks me, it humbles me. We who WORSHIP Him must worship Him in SPIRIT and in TRUTH. How can we truly worship Him unless we do so with an honesty and a transparency. If there's something that cannot be revealed....we might as well not worship Him at all. We must worship in TRUTH. HONESTY. Just as we are. And when we come face to face with GLORY and with the KINDNESS of a SAVIOR in light of WHO we truly are!??! We are forever changed.

AUTHENTICITY. That's where we grow. In the MESSY soil of our imperfections. Our flaws. The frailty of HUMAN NATURE. It's REAL. How can He redeem it and restore it unless we are first HONEST with who we ARE?

Authentic before GOD. Authentic before MAN. Can we not just admit we make mistakes? We NEED each other. We NEED our pastors. We NEED a SAVIOR!!!!!!!!!!!! We. Are. HUMAN. Not a single one of us has it all together. Maybe some of us have figured things out sooner than others. That's only because they are in touch with the wisdom from the word of God and have learned to discern the heart and voice of God instead of allowing their thoughts to be weighed against the judgment of others.

It's your HEART He's after. In all of its transparency. We come "broken to be mended, wounded to be healed, desperate to be rescued, empty to be filled, guilty to be pardoned......and welcomed with open arms".....JUST AS WE ARE.

If we would only treat one another with that same kind of GRACE and UNDERSTANDING maybe so many people wouldn't feel the need to hide who they really are. The BIBLE is FULL of stories of men and women who were just that.....IMPERFECT. Those were the people Jesus reached out to. Those were the people He singled out. Where KINDNESS met imperfection. Where GRACE collides with HUMANITY. And in that same story we see MIRACLES, REDEMPTION and RESTORATION take place that otherwise couldn't happen unless they first were honest with GOD and with each other.

What a great thing technology is. But let's not lose sight of reality. And let's not be so lost in this virtual world we lose sight of the people around us.

.............on second thought keep your clutter or allow God to clean it up but don't pretend it's not there.
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