What does it mean to be authentic? We are all pretty sure we know ourselves, but authenticity is more than that. Most of us are not always who we SAY we are.
As Christ-followers and ambassadors for his kingdom, integrity is important. Our actions should match our words. We have many idioms for this concept:
Walk the talk.
Actions speak louder than words.
Live life out loud.
The Bible speaks to this as well. In 1 John 3:18 we find these words (paraphrased), “My dear family, let’s not just say that we love each other; but instead, let our actions say it truthfully for us.”
What does this look like in real life? How would we be different if we always lived out what we say we believe?
Jesus gave us a good idea. He was loved by all the “wrong” people, and misunderstood, hated, and eventually killed by those who thought themselves righteous. He always saw the needs of others as a priority. He demonstrated his love by dying for us, even while we were still “enemies” of his kingdom. How can we apply this in our lives?
First, think carefully about what you say. Most of us are too quick to judge others, while we secretly have our own issues. We look past the log in our eye to “help” our friends with specks in theirs.
Second, when you do speak, let your words be full of grace and truth…just as Jesus was.
Finally, when your actions and words don’t match, come clean. Apologize. Ask for forgiveness from those you offend and from God.
We are there with you, in the trenches, trying to be authentic each day. We are stronger together. Love on!