Recently I was reading the Magnolia magazine in which Joanna Gaines writes this, “Authenticity can’t be copied, it can’t be false. ” She goes on to say, it seems to me that there are very few absolutes in this life, only a handful of things that are true to their core. If our authenticity is one of these rare undisputed truths, why then does it seem to be such a difficult part of ourselves to live out?
For over a year I have been praying, take me deep Lord and I am learning, again, and again going deep means counting the cost to get there.
Maybe its my age but my desire to be real has grown stronger. I try to live with authenticity, to not portray myself as anything other then a saved sinner, a forgiven sinner, a frail women with a heart for God but also a women who can respond with a string of harsh words when I am mad. A women who can smile at you but inside I would like to knock your head off. A women who gets deeply hurt but you would never know it because I will say I am fine when I am not. A women who envies what others have at times. A women who gossips, a women who does not have it all to gather most of the time. Etc.
Not to long ago I was emailing a missionary friend in the jungle of Papua New Guinea, she ask how I was doing. I decided to tell her about my latest crisis of faith, my struggle with a certain person. Her response blew me away, she was discouraged by my honesty. Told me it was not what she needed to hear. I realized she thought I did not struggle like she did. It was a lesson learned to be discerning about who I am real with.
There is a solid sound to the word authenticity. To the ear it sounds wholesome, well rounded, strong, and full of knowledge and wisdom and confidence. I think we all crave it the longer we live but fear keeps us from living it out some of the time. Paul states it well, I am what I am by the grace of God.
Here is something I read recently that helped me.
Authenticity is more for yourself than for other people.
It is more about being honest to yourself than being honest to other people. It doesn’t depend on whether other people perceive you as authentic or fake. It’s not just about speaking the truth. Not everyone will have the privilege to listen in to all your thoughts, emotions or deepest secrets. As long as you are honest with yourself, you are living an authentic life.
If you really want to authentic just ask young children how you look. The other day I needed to wash my hair but had a much to get done before I could do it. So I wrapped a scarf around my head, it looked like I had no hair. Our three year old grandson, Reedley upon seeing me, yelled, Grandma, what wrong with your hair. I said, you don’t think Grandma hair looks good, he replied with his thumb pointing down, not good Grandma, not good. My goodness, I love that little boy.
Here is my after thought on Reedley’s authenticity. He was not afraid to answer my question. He knows I will love him no matter what he says, besides if I did not want the truth I should not have asked.
Of course the greatest example of authenticity is our Savior, Jesus Christ.