So Not Authentic

Transparent is not authentic

“Sister, a few years ago you offended me. I would smile but deep down I was so angry. I have forgiven you. It was hard, but I have. I thought I would let you know because I want to be transparent with you, Sister.”

Has this ever happened to you? Where someone has dumped offence on you for the sake of being authentic? Just so you know, authentic and transparent are not the same. 

As I wrote in a previous post, authentic is to be true to the spirit within you. The spirit within is the Spirit of God, which means true authenticity is living according to the spirit. God does not make a big deal out of sin or the fact He has forgiven it. He forgives and moves on. It is the spirit we should mimic.

Over-sharing is not authentic

We live in a world where over sharing is normal. We think we have the right to know everything about someone’s life. But it is normal to not know everything. 

There are plenty of details left out of the Bible. Jesus healed many people who are not named. When the disciples asked why a boy was blind Jesus did not give the reason. There is no written account of the first thirty years of Jesus’ life.

Be transparent with your spouse, family and accountability partner. That’s healthy. But don’t feel the pressure to over share specifics of your life with the whole world in an attempt to be authentic.

Divulging struggles is not authentic

As a leader your job is to encourage others. Personal struggles don’t do that. Instead they give people an excuse to stay on the same level, or worse, move backwards. You can tell people you know how they feel without going into every facet of your personal struggle. 

Allow your testimony to focus on the victory achieved in Christ. Glorify God more than you glorify sin. Then you are being authentic.

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More about Sarah Coleman

Sarah Coleman is wife, mother of two boys, writer, pastor, teacher and friend. She loves Jesus with a passion and the feel of Australian sand beneath her toes.

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