In the midst of all that has been going on this week, a good friend pointed me to the following quote from Socrates:
“The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to actually be what we pretend to be.”
When I read it, this quote sent my mind racing. I started to think about all the times that I have pretended to be something more than I am. I thought about how I have embellished and lied to win the “right” friends, secure the “best” clients, and get ahead. I thought about how I say that I am a faithful and good person, yet I am critical, judgmental, and at times a real two faced SOB.
As these candid thoughts started to fill my head this morning, I asked myself, “Why do I insist on pretending to be something that I am not?” I pondered, “Why is what I pretend to be a ‘better’ version than who I am?” I questioned, “What is holding me back from being what I pretend to be?”
I am afraid of exposing the weaknesses of the lost, lonely, inadequate, hurt, broken, and angry boy which lives inside of me. Rather than casting light the flaws and weaknesses of my real self, I would rather hide behind the persona which I have created for myself. In other words, because of my prevailing fear that those around me would not accept the flawed and broken person that I am, I would rather lie and pretend to be someone better than I am.
Fortunately, Christ has accepted the flawed and broken person that I am. Through His sacrifice, I have been forgiven for the sins created from the lies of the person that I pretended to be. Since I have accepted God’s forgiveness and His sacrifice, I have been liberated and, like a child, am growing into the good and faithful man that I have pretended to be.
Peter 2:1-3 (CEB)-
Therefore, get rid of all ill will and all deceit, pretense, envy, and slander. Instead, like a newborn baby, desire the pure milk of the word. Nourished by it, you will grow into salvation, since you have tasted that the Lord is good.
Father God, thank you for the loving sacrifice of your son Jesus Christ. Thank you for giving Him the strength to passionately endure pain and suffering on behalf of the world and on behalf of me. Through His sacrifice and passion, thank you for forgiving me of my sins and lies. Through your forgiveness and grace, thank you for liberating me to become the good person which I have pretended to be. Please help me to honorably and truthfully live life day by day according to your word and instruction. All of this I ask in the name of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Sincere thanks to my friend who sent this to me.