There is nothing worse than the illusion of perfection in our churches.
We see others who have it all together and we feel that something is wrong inside of us.
We see leaders and teachers who preach against sinners without sharing their own struggle with sin. We see friends and families that spread gossip and judgement like wildfire.
And this causes an isolation within us that leads to shame.
How can we encourage those who are struggling when we don’t offer up our own stories of struggle?
How can we invite the broken into the healing light of Christ if we aren’t taking our own brokenness to that light?
[bctt tweet="How can we invite the broken into the healing light of Christ if we aren’t taking our own brokenness to that light?" username="NicoleAKauffman"]
The Lie of Perfection
We live in a society where everyone is to put their best foot forward.
Weakness is frowned upon and struggles cause discomfort.
Upon entering church, we smile. We answer the expected when asked how we are.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve answered, “I’m good” when my world was crashing down.
I’ve plastered on a smile in the midst of grief and loneliness, just waiting for one genuine person to take a moment and invite me in.
And all the while, this lie of perfection that permeates our churches creates an atmosphere of shame.
[bctt tweet="This lie of perfection that permeates our churches creates an atmosphere of shame." username="NicoleAKauffman"]
As much as we want to share our stories, there is a shame to the dirty and wounded pasts that so many carry with them.
We must tear down this illusion of perfection.
There is a brokenness in all of us that needs to be addressed. There are pasts that need to be brought forth in order to be restored.
The Need to Share
So many Christians carry the burden of a painful past or a consuming addiction or a broken relationship with their Savior.
And so many feel the need to keep their struggle hidden.
The horror of a shame-ridden Christianity is not what God intended for us.
We must create an environment where the brokenhearted can share their pain. It is only when our pain is brought into the light that we can find true healing and restoration.
[bctt tweet="The horror of a shame-ridden Christianity is not what God intended for us." username="NicoleAKauffman"]
Everything exposed by the light becomes visible. Ephesians 5:13.
It is our call to stand with our brothers and sisters and to help them to bring everything into the light of Christ.
Shame has no place in our hearts.
Therefore there is now no condemnation in Christ. -Romans 8:1
We must be vigilant to seek to love those who enter the doors of our churches.
We must drive out all judgement and hypocrisy and offer to carry each other’s burdens.
God asks many of His children to walk through painful times and to suffer for His name’s sake. But He promises to bring His glory and redemption into the painful moments of our lives.
Instead of being the voice of judgement in another’s time of struggle, we are to be the invitation to openness. And in that openness, Christ can work.
We can encourage those who are hiding in shame by speaking out and sharing our own stories.
We must begin to share our imperfections and our struggles and in doing so, we can share the true path to healing.
As Christians, we must take a stand against this lie of shame and the need to appear perfect.
We are surrounded by others whose worlds may be crashing down. We are surrounded by others who feel unloved, unworthy, broken.
[bctt tweet="We are surrounded by others who feel unloved, unworthy, broken." username="NicoleAKauffman"]
It is only when we rid our hearts and our churches of judgement and gossip that we can truly open the door to a Christ-centered call to love.
And in doing so, we invite others to turn from brokenness and find healing.
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