We, as Christians, so often feel the need to have the right answers, to make the right decisions, to do the right things, and to be strong in our faith. We take the culture’s view of what it means to be strong and make it even worse by adding religion to it. It is then, refreshing to read this post from Matt Kleberg where he says:
Last summer a certain friend of mine weighed heavy on my heart. I made a point to pray for him and love him whenever and however I could. That same friend later shared with someone else that he simply could not relate to me. In his eyes, I had put on a glossy façade, feigning invincibility and faultlessness. I never revealed my weakness and humanness and thus was not a real person. He saw me as a fake, like a mannequin in Christianity’s window display. My friend’s assessment was right on- my pride and fear kept me from really loving him at all.
I internalize and cover up my sin and weakness because I fear that any failure on my part implies a failure of Christianity. I must be perfect; otherwise Christianity is just a big flop, exposed as an elaborate hoax. The pressure is on and I must perform so that Christianity looks like a good buy.
I so relate to that, on both sides, for I have put on the strong Christian front, and I have tried to relate to people who had no faults and all the right answers. It’s all the more disturbing when I have considered myself a fairly vulnerable person, and yet have still tried to be perfect, and sometimes put up a facade to appear strong. Yet, it’s all a lie. It’s another way that God’s kingdom is not of this world.
When I think of the Christian leaders I’ve known, the ones who are humble and unperfect are the ones I’ve respected the most. I can also think of a lot of Christian leaders who feign invincibility and faultlessness, and that saddens me.