WYSIWYG!

279721111_c96e83bc3dI heard a visitor comment recently about Activate Church saying, “You do the authentic thing really well.” I took it as a compliment and a perplexing comment at the same time. I thought it was an encouraging comment because we want people to encounter real people following a real Jesus. For too long our culture has perceived a massive chasm between who Jesus is and what the Church is. The closer we get to Jesus the more this gap is decreased and the more authentic our witness is.

The way this sincere person talked about ‘authenticity’ was like ‘being real and authentic is something you do rather than something you are’. Authenticity is not a technique to win people to Christ or to appear like the ‘real thing’. Authenticity is WYSIWYG! What You See Is What You Get.

I want my personal and public presentation to be one and the same thing. People may not always agree with your perspective but at least you are being true to your convictions. Now you can be sincere and yet sincerely wrong and just because you are sincere doesn’t mean that being true to yourself is justified. All of us should be seeking to live, converse and action the truth, love and power of Jesus Christ and if something in our lives is out of alignment with Jesus, we seek His help to amend it.

Subtract the Unnecessary

Being authentic is about subtracting the unnecessary in your life. Many people add stuff into their lives and persona’s that are not needed and only cover up who they really are. Identify what stuff you have added to you that is just plain unnecessary and get rid of it. If you try and be someone else, who is going to be you?

Real means ‘Imperfect’

Being real means you will not be perfect all the time. You will make mistakes. Don’t use God’s grace as a license to justify your sinful behaviour but at the same time recognize that you are a work in progress and God is working in you more of Himself. Being real means being transparent about your failings and inadequacies and not trying to cover them up.

You can smell it

I think you can smell authenticity and its polar opposite. There is a big difference between walking into an environment where people are trying to impress you and are just paying lip service and an environment where people are genuinely interested in you. Lets be the genuine article and not something that’s a bit ‘wiffy’.

Love God and Love People (Mt 22:34-40)

Being genuine begins with loving God and loving people from your heart. Don’t try and create an impression but be the real you from the heart. God sees your heart anyway and He is not interested in you trying to keep up appearances. This very issue is why Jesus took the Pharisees to task time and time again. They were filled with the ‘airs’ and ‘graces’ of religion but lacked the substance of a close, personal and real relationship with God. 

Authenticity is not a technique to be mastered it’s a heart reality to be lived out. WYSIWYG!

Lead the Change!

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