Life is messy, overwhelming, and scary. Yet we post on Instagram and Facebook about our exotic vacations and rich friendships, not the late night tears and broken relationships. We talk about the best parts of our week, not the moments when we yelled at a friend or let someone down. It’s easier to keep people at a distance instead of letting them into our embarrassing and flawed lives, so we build walls.
This morning, a student opened up about the dirt of life in youth group. It was a beautiful moment where our conversation transitioned from saying the right answers to letting down our walls. Everything wasn’t being portrayed as perfect and put together, and we talked about dealing with real pain in our lives. This student was able to feel safe enough to share their messy and hard story that was filled with brokenness. That required an insane amount of vulnerability. All the filters were gone and there wasn’t any put together words or Bible verses. The words of this student were raw, real, and heartbreaking.
Romans 8:18 says,
“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”
Even though this is what the Bible tells us, we still put a filter on our lives. Instead of realizing that this pain is temporary, and God has a greater plan to use our suffering in powerful ways, we still hide it and avoid authenticity and vulnerability. Even if we share sin, we only share the acceptable sins that we know others cannot judge us for, and we make it seem better than it is. We post pictures of coffee with our bible and hipster journal so others see that we have our Jesus time, and we have the right answers at small group that make it seem like we know our Jesus knowledge. But where are we REAL?
God wants us just as we are: messy, broken and needy. Matthew 11: 28 says,
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
I want to challenge you to look beyond perfection. Be honest and authentic with those around you, as well as your relationship with Christ. God never asks you to have your life together. He asks you to come to him in your pain. Let your walls down and run to the God who wants every part of you, whether that involves joy, kindness, shame, or brokenness.