November 23, 2011
I was talking with a friend on Tuesday night and the topic of transparency came up. Why is transparency missing in our local churches? Why is it being replaced in our relationships? Why is it so hard to be transparent?
Jesus was transparent, although without sin, He was controversial to say the least, and hated by many. Jesus walked into a room and everyone started whispering, making those awkwardly, long, purposeful stares, turning those judgmental, cold, shoulders. Then there was the verbal attack from the Pharisees, Jesus couldn't get a break! Why did He stir up so much drama? What was it about this man that rubbed some people the wrong way but drew so many others towards Him? He was transparent. The marginalized found comfort in His openness, they found a place they could rest and not be judged. They found a friend who spoke messages of salvation and hope and they found a Savior who could redeem them from their sin. Jesus broke down social barricades and invited the poor, the sick, the condemned to come eat with Him. In the scriptures we see Jesus tip tables in the temple, weep over the death of His friend, heal people, enjoy good food, fellowship with friends. He was transparent, with Jesus what you see is what you get.
Funny thing is that it was outrageous then and it's outrageous now. We live in the the world of "Be Who You Are" or "Be Unique". But we're still being told to "Be" something. If you survive High School without going through a major identity crisis, you'll most likely get sucked into the university vortex of self help books or drowned in a sea of psychology classes. Then you go home and are Calvin and Hobbes attacked by your alter-ego, Internet self, who is looking less, and less like you everyday. We live in a world obsessed with image. We'll put on anything, except transparency. Why?
Father, I'm proud, I don't like seeing my sin and I certainly don't want others to see it. I'm too busy primping and priming my sin to look acceptable to those people around me that I'm robbing myself of Your grace. I'm asking You, the master surgeon, to put a bandaid on a fatal wound, claiming to know what's best and not looking to the future I say, "You can stitch it up later doc, all I need is a good old bandaid."
Father sometimes it's awkward to be transparent, actually I take that back... It's always awkward. It's difficult to peel off that cheesy smile of, "I'm fine thanks! How are you?". I have to be ready to get real with people, and be ready to receive transparency as well. Real relationships are messy and its almost always easier to have fake ones. But Lord, make me more like you, mold me more like Jesus. Make me transparent so that Your grace may abound in my life and I can grow in community and love of You. Break down the walls of insecurities and lies this worlds been building in my heart.
"Take my life and let it be, always only, all for thee."
Take my life and make me transparent, like Jesus.