The Challenge of Transparency

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We are surrounded by the impulsive pressures of being perfect. The cosmetic stores provide us with cover ups that are “necessary” to looking our best. Social media has become a window in which we share the greatest edited versions of ourselves and, though we want to put our best face forward, are we doing so at the risk of hiding the beautiful scars that God has healed for the sole purpose of sharing hope to others?

It’s easy to believe the lie that our mistakes and imperfections are undesirable or that the healing God has produced in our lives needs to be hidden and covered, in attempts to eliminate our shame from past mistakes.

Embracing Your Story

Transparency is a challenge for us all and it’s easy to feel contempt, instead of thankfulness, in our individual testimonies and stories of salvation. But understand that it’s the scars that we’ve healed from that make the loudest statement to the grace and goodness of God!

In my life, I have endured many moments where healing was necessary. I spent so much of my college life compromising and cutting corners that ultimately lead me to spiritual brokenness. I compromised in my purity, in my obedience and in my relationship with God. For the sake of friendships and popularity, I gave so much of myself away. So, when I came to Christ, I needed a major heart transplant, which He provided through Salvation in Jesus. So many of us came to Christ because of brokenness- broken hopes, broken hearts, broken dreams. But it was His loving kindness that healed us and He desires that we boast in Him about the good things He has done in order to give hope to others who need it most.

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladEmbracing Your Story as a Christian Womanly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” -2 Corinthians 12:9

To boast means to proclaim, and as Paul did, so should we: to proclaim that God’s love and power perfects us in our imperfect places!

Delighting in His Goodness

We each have a powerful and beautiful story to tell of the healing and deliverance that God has performed in our lives. We need to learn to love that story because it is ours and plays an intricate role in God’s kingdom. Part of loving your story involves simply discovering what is beautiful in what God has done, is doing and will do in your life.

Love your story and share your testimony, with confidence, because God, Himself, wrote it, and though there are areas and seasons that we wish we could avoid or re-do, the scriptures declare that all things are working together for the good of those who love God (Romans 8:28).

True, human error and the shame that comes with sin makes it so easy to hate parts of our testimonies. Though our gracious God declares that He will forget our transgressions through confession (Hebrews 8:12), we are not always as gracious to ourselves. But, there are those in our lives who need to know our stories. They need to know that there is hope for them, too!

Often times, we are both impressed and feel unworthy of the ‘picture perfect’ Christianity that is sometimes portrayed to us. We put people on pedestals for their abstinence, their blooming ministries, their seemingly perfect marriages and their blessings. But I have come to understand that it’s our healed scars and brokenness that the world is more interested in because these are proof of God’s redemption.

None of us are perfect and even your most trusted mentor has been through the fire and the flood, at one point in their lives. No one lives without their share of heartache and each of us experience growth in seasons of discomfort and challenge. Don’t be afraid to show your scars, as the Lord leads you to because it is the beauty out of our ashes that attracts the world to Jesus!

No matter where you are in your life right now, no matter the pain, the shame or the confusion, you are dearly loved and you are never alone. In Christ, you have a hope for a future (Jeremiah 29:11) and that future involves living your life to declare the goodness and the glory of God!

Don’t give up and don’t count yourself unworthy.

You are victorious, you are called and you are equipped to do all that God is preparing for you to do. Your scars do not disqualify you; they are proof of your authorization to share your testimony with confidence in what the Lord has done!

“Blessed is She who believes what the Lord has declared over her”- Luke 1:45

 

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Katrina McCain
Katrina McCain

Katrina McCain is the author of Beyond Being Good: Seeking Christ’s Perfection for Our Imperfect Hearts.

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Comments

  1. Amen! What I find so crucial in sharing our testimonies is that we can reach others who might be thinking they are “too far gone” for Christ to save them. I know because I used to be that person! I kept reading blogs and messages from these seemingly perfect good women who never struggled with anything and had his awesome husband and family. And there was no way I would’ve let them tell me about Christ because all I’d think was “yeah that’s easy for you to say…”. But reading stories and testimonies from women who had experienced the struggles I was facing and God placing a best friend in my life who’d been there transformed my life. It made me realize my past could still be redeemed no matter how horrible it was. And that’s precisely why transparency and sharing our stories matters. It could be a matter of life and death for someone else and the nudge they need towards Christ.

  2. Thanks for your reply. I think there is an important difference between having physical ‘scars’ and having scars of internal bitterness/brokenness/unforgiveness that a lot of Christians seem to think they can never get over. Jesus came to set us completely free, just as he was completely free, even though he had physical ‘scars’.

  3. Good thoughts and points in your post; thank you for the Godly reminders. I do believe God puts within each of us a desire for perfection (after all, He is perfection, and we seek Him). The power, ability, and peace comes when we die to self and allow God to do the work in us.
    And yes: even Jesus kept His scars so that the world may know Who He is and the great things He hath done.

  4. Hi Katrina, I agree that in the world people feel pressured to hide their flaws, though they are not so much sin-conscious as beauty- and socially- conscious. This is to be expected, because they don’t have a revelation of sin, and care about other people’s opinion rather than God’s. Within Christianity, I sadly observe the same thing: Christians trying to look attractive and popular. I think when Christians put our focus on Jesus then we will have in mind the things of God, including sharing our testimony with others. I believe his intention is to fully heal us and makes us whole so that we don’t even have any scars. That way we can reach out to others and give them the hope that they also can be completely free.

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