I listened to a couple of amazing testimonies this morning at the Men’s Breakfast in St. Agatha. It was a really wonderful word of how God can heal people – supernaturally. In the case of those giving their testimony, God healed them of alcohol and drug addiction in an amazing and powerful way. It was really encouraging to hear them share about the power of God. I admired the transparency of the speakers. It takes a lot of courage to stand up in front of a group of people and testify about Jesus but also to testify about the many mistakes that you have made in your life. It is our tendency to hide our shortcomings, not expose them.
Why is transparency so hard? Is it because we think that if we are open about our fears, about our hang-ups, about our imperfections, about our secret faults that other people are going to think less of us. Isn’t the opposite actually true? The more honest you are, the more people respect you. What is more attractive? Deceitfulness or honesty. Honesty is more attractive.
I think honesty is a critical part of community life in a church but it is much harder to do than we might think. Even in House Church people can be reluctant to open up and share from their personal life. And depending on our church background, you might have been trained to pretend your life is “together” whether it is or not. I think that this is a problem, when we are afraid to be honest. I was thinking that as I listened to two amazing testimonies this morning. We sell God short when we fail to testify of the bad things he has delivered us from in our life or the bad things he is working on in our life.
How do you feel about this issue of transparency? Is it something that is missing in the Christian community?
How do we know what is appropriate to share with a larger group and what should only be shared with a counselor or close friend?
I think our desire and enthusiasm to see God transform us–how amazing that He does!– sometimes makes us hesitant to admit to, let alone show others the areas in our lives that are still “under construction” or “undergoing repair.” Maybe if we could just focus more on celebrating the process and the journey towards healing and holiness, we wouldn’t be trying so hard to hide the distress marks!