Yeah, yeah, you know all the typical vices: sex, money, drugs, alcohol.
And, I'm sure you're frequently graced with chatter on the typical sins in the Christian realm like pride, gossip, homosexuality ... Jezebel and all her dramatic heresies. But what about competence? Charisma? Organization skills? No?
Well, you're in for a broadside to the proverbial face today because I'd like to suggest the outlandish notion that most of us are actually using our gifts rather than vices as vehicles to distance ourselves from reliance on Jesus. Not tracking with me yet? Let's take a walk.
I've met a lot of really powerful leaders in my life. Some are global-level leaders. I've been coached by plenty of those and even lived in houses with some of these incredible spiritual parents. Through all of this blessed influence in my life I've noticed one trend over the years—they're all a mess.
You heard me right. Every single one of them is never a single bit as shiny behind the scenes as they are on social media, a stage or a book. Don't hear me wrong; these are all genuine men and women of God who are not trying to hide who they really are, but once you get behind the scenes of someone's life, you really get to boldly discover their humanity. Most of these leaders are still pursuing God today, discipling genuine Jesus-followers and producing great fruit in their lives—but some aren't.
A few have fallen ministries, broken marriages and devastated families. And there is an ever-present thread woven into their tapestry of brokenness. It's called an inability to embrace weakness.
Weakness as a virtue sounds very counterintuitive to the CEO, the influencer, the stereotypical megachurch pastor and the religion addict, but I'd like to submit to you that it's very much a value of heaven. And a mandate from Jesus.
2 Corinthians 12:9 says that His strength is made perfect in our weakness, right? Now, I'm nowhere near a qualified theologian, but it seems to me like this passage suggests that God has actually submitted a measure of His strength to whether or not we'll admit that we're weak.
Notice that I used the word "admit." We're all broken. We're all sinful. There is a myriad of verses in the Scriptures that make it clear we're not quite up to par with the majesty and holiness of a perfect God. But when Jesus said in Luke 5 that He came for the sick, not the healthy, I believe He was referring to those who would walk in the opposing spirit of the religious establishment of the time and admit that they are broken and need God every day of their lives.
So where does that leave our conversation on our masks of competency? It leaves us with the shocking revelation that many of the leaders in front of us are actually using their perceived spiritual maturity and marketable gifts as an excuse to not wake up every day and remind God that they're utterly incapable of living a second without Him.
His mercies are new every day, right? Maybe that's because we need them every day. And this journey into receiving His strength through our weakness doesn't start with others; it starts with God. It starts with admitting to Him that we need Him each day.
But our lives of competence keep us merely trying to convince Him we're worthy rather than admitting our weaknesses. We'd rather attempt to cover our shame rather than genuinely feel the brokenness that leads us to repentance and ultimately freedom.
So, join me for this conversation. Join me in unmasking ourselves so God's grace can hit the target it was intended to.
I know it hurts, but join me in really feeling broken for once with the promise that it won't linger. The promise that the great physician always heals, that the great composer always tunes His instruments and that the greatest Father always runs to His kids.
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