Psalm 51:15 O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. 16 For you have no delight in sacrifice; if I were to give a burnt offering, you would not be pleased. 17 The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.
Here the psalmist points out a common problem in ancient times – and today. There are times when people of faith go through the outward religious motions, while at the same time rebelling against God.
What is asked for is “integrity” – meaning the inner life is congruent with the outer life. For most of the natural world, something is as it appears to be. If you slice open a watermelon it’s a watermelon on the outside and inside. Same thing for a tree or a fish or most anything in nature.
People, however, can be different. We can publically present ourselves as one thing, while actually being something else on the inside. I think a common cultural term for this is “poser”.
God does not want us to be “posers”.
I’ve been serving at my current congregation for going on two years now. That’s not a long time, but it’s long enough that we’re really getting to know each other. The people are seeing that I have strengths… and weaknesses. There are some things I do really well, some things so-so, and some things not well at all. I’m a mixed bag… because I’m human. And, frankly, so are the people of the congregation. We are all gifted and flawed at the same time.
Truth? I TREASURE this season because it means we can be REAL with each other and see one another as we truly are, not as we want one another to be. As we navigate this next year or two, figuring out our strengths and weaknesses together based on our true selves (warts and all), we are laying a foundation for long-term effectiveness as a church. Together.
What about you? Are things starting to get real? In your home? With your friends? Your marriage? Your workplace? Your place of worship? Fear not dear sisters and brothers. The “real” stuff is the good stuff!
Heavenly Father, give us grace to be genuine with one another, not putting on airs, but putting on humility before you and one another. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.