Thursday, February 18, 2016

Transparency--Good or Bad?

I can recall over and over again mom and dad coaching us  kids that our best behavior was expected when visiting others--it did make sense.  Going to church even demanded that we conduct ourselves like angels with problem free lives.  I suppose there was some fear that others may not accept us or want anything to do with us if they truly knew we were not perfect and we had some bad habits or poor practices.  Many folks live life with fear that others will not accept them if they are truly seen for who they are.  At the same time, some people refuse to allow others to get too close to them because they know that the life that they are living would be unacceptable and is truly not Christian.  We can establish a safe zone where others are not invited to enter in because it only exists for ourselves and those who must see us for who we really are.  The problem is that we are truly not safe and we portray ourselves as someone that we are not.  It is amazing that we can even get used to living as another person for so long.

The psalmist, David, boldly petitioned the Lord to have free roam in his life in order to expose anything that should not exist in his life.  He prayed, "Search me, O God, and know my heart!  Try me and know my thoughts!  And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!"  (Psalm 139:23-24)  David cared most about God's view of him and he wanted to live in view of eternity and not for the moment.  As you read through the book of Psalms, David is very transparent and it even appears that he lived his life like a yo-yo in his relationship with God.  David repeatedly found his strength in the character and love of God and not in being someone else.

I'm afraid that too many times we are more concerned about our pride, how we look to others, and how others value us that we fail to understand that God ought to be our greatest concern.  You see, transparency is not a sign of weakness but of character.  It allows others to know that we are truly weak but yet we are made strong through the strength of Christ alone (2 Cor. 12:10).  Transparency allows others to see us for who we truly are and it allows them to see us trust God on the journey.  The goal of transparency is that God would be glorified as the Completer of our lives.  It allows others to glorify God as they see Him at work in us.  

Good behavior is indeed important--mom and dad were right.  However, let's be careful not to portray ourselves as another person when we know that he or she does not exist.  Others love broken people who are redeemed by God!

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