You Are Chosen and Enough
by Lauren Sanchez
While watching The Bachelor recently, I was struck by the surprising empathy that one woman chose to display to another woman who’d hurt her. Instead of angrily keeping her distance, Kendall confronted another contestant, Krystal, about her wrong-doing and even took it a step further. She called out the goodness in Krystal and told her that she understood why she did the things she did, but that she didn’t have to act this way. She could be vulnerable. She could be real.
Real. Why does this seem like such a foreign concept?
We have gotten so used to, as a society, living behind facades. We present ourselves a certain way for job interviews. We edit our Instagram accounts to show only the most interesting moments of our lives. We try to appear as the perfect Christian, parent, or leader instead of just being transparent about our brokenness.
This only works but for so long. Eventually, we are found out or become exhausted keeping up the charade. Christian author Shauna Niequist explains this struggle in her book, Present Over Perfect:
“What kept me running? That’s the question I keep returning to, the lock I keep fiddling with. I was highly invested in maintaining my reputation as a very capable person. I thought that how other people felt about me or thought about me could determine my happiness. When I see that on the page now, staring back at me in black and white, I see how deeply flawed this idea is, how silly even.”
Niequist continues, “The crucial journey, then, for me, has been from dependence on external expectations, down into my own self, deeper still into God’s view of me, his love for me that doesn’t change, that will not change, that defines and grounds everything.”
What I’ve learned is that when we choose to let others see us in a polished manner, a version of ourselves that is partly us (or not us at all), we miss out on the true joy of feeling fully known and fully loved. It is only when we take off the mask and let others see us that we can really experience the freedom to be ourselves.
You are enough. There is freedom in letting go of control over others’ perception of us. We can breathe. We find the space to relax and rest in God. He will carry our burdens (Matthew 11:28-30). And, He will build us up in Him so that we have a new idea of our worth, one that is based on our identity in Him.
“For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves (Ephesians 1:4-6)."
Intersecting Faith & Life:
I challenge you this week to begin taking off that mask that is insecurity. Take little steps to let others in. Share something with a coworker or friend that they may not know about you. As you let others see the real you, remind yourself what God’s Word says and build your self-confidence on that.
The Characters of Christmas is a podcast created to help you take a fresh look at the Christmas story by getting to know the minor characters that played a part in Jesus’ birth. It is the companion to Dan Darling's book "The Characters of Christmas: The Unlikely People Caught Up in the Story of Jesus."