If you could name one thing at which you aren't particularly skilled, what would it be? This one thing can be anything from writing to reading to running to football, to cooking, to drawing, and on and on. It's easy to admit the things at which we aren't particularly skilled. For me, it's golf. I am not a golfer. I am more proficient at the hand-wedge than any other club that golf has to offer. If there were such thing as a designated cart-driver, then I'd be that guy. Most of the balls I hit go more to the right or left or behind than they do forward.
I'm terrible at golf.
But, that's easy to admit. It isn't a problem to admit I'm bad at golf. No one, after hearing this revelation thinks, "REALLY? How could you be bad at golf?" Instead, most find it perfectly acceptable that I am, in the kindest terms, not proficient in the game of golf.
However, it's a lot more difficult to admit that I'm not so good at the things at which I'm supposed to be good - or the things at which I wish I were good. This is normal for people. We want to be very good at certain things, and don't particularly care if we're not at others. For me, I know I'm not a good golfer, but I believe I am a good writer. I enjoy writing, and I want to write well. I honestly could not care less about my golf game, but my writing game - that's a different story. I care so much about trying to get better and better at writing that I own a typewriter because I know that many of my favorite writers composed their masterpieces on such a device.
The problem is, however, that when you are somewhat skilled in an area, and you want to be better, you often have quite a few blind spots. I've gone back to writings from months in the past to reread them and saw massive issues with my writing (hindsight is 20/20, I guess). I know that many times in the moment, I've thought that what I was writing was excellent, only to realize that it's mediocre, or worse.
The truth is, we will never be perfect at anything at which we aspire to be great. There will - in pretty much all cases - be someone better than us. Is this different for our walk with Jesus?
No, it isn't.
Following Jesus is the most crucial thing in any Christian's life. We want to do the best we possibly can at following him because we want to experience him on a more intimate level every day. However, if we're honest, we know that we Christians fall short of following him daily.
We want - like an aspiring writer - to be good followers of Jesus, and we should! Not only do we experience more joy as we follow Jesus more and more, but we also set a better example for those around us who might also want to follow Jesus. But, we tend to miss - or ignore - the areas in which we need some work. Because we wish to be good followers of Jesus (or appear to be), we pretend these areas of weakness do not exist, or we hide them completely.
This is not living in freedom.
This week, we are going to look at a passage: 2 Corinthians 11:30, in which Paul sets the example for us. He writes,
Being aware of our weaknesses, according to Paul, should be the way in which we boast about God. We cannot afford to be blind to the areas in which we are not measuring up. We need to be as aware as we possibly can! None of us are following Jesus as perfectly as we'd like to be. Unfortunately, we tend to hide or ignore these areas of deficiency. We don't have to do this. Ignoring or suppressing your faults is not freedom, it is purposely enslaving yourself to those faults. Instead, like Paul, we should use our weakness to boast about the love of Christ.
This week, I'm calling for honesty. I think we could all look at our faults and admit where they are. I believe that as a community we can pray for one another in our faults and also boast about how incredible God's love is for all of us that are sinners.
For this week, let's be upfront and fight against the slavery of our faults and sins. This week, like Paul, let's boast about God's love despite our sins.
I'm a prideful, lustful, arrogant, self-centered man. Jesus still loves me.
Now, it's your turn.
In the comments, boast about God.