Authenticity is about letting go of our images in the mirror. Instead of looking outward at our reflections, we must learn to look inward and see our reflections in God’s eyes.
It’s not that we should neglect our appearances. I put some effort into my appearance every day. I make sure I look put together and presentable. Its not that my physical appearance is in any way close to being as important as my spiritual appearance, but we live in a physical world, and I choose to look presentable because when I look presentable, I feel presentable.
People who put zero effort into how they look can appear lazy or depressed. It’s not that anyone has any right to judge a lazy or depressed person because we don’t know their struggle, but I don’t want to be perceived that way. I’m not lazy, and I’m not depressed, so that’s not how I choose to express myself. Personal style is one of the ways we are able to express ourselves. Self expression is a part of authenticity!
Authenticity is about letting go of what others think. We tap into our authenticity when we stop living in the shadow of other people’s opinions.
I love Instagram. It’s my absolute favorite form of social media. The funny thing is, it’s not even for the social aspect. I love Instagram because it’s my own personal online scrapbook. It’s how I catalogue my creativity and my life journey. If other people want to “like” or “follow”, that’s great, but if my intention was to gain followers, I would’ve quit a long time ago—I only have 100!
If I cared about what others thought, I probably never would have started a blog where I write about my faith as not many Christians (no Christians I personally know) are bold enough to. Sometimes you have to be bold! Sometimes you have to do things others are not or have not yet. People might view me as over the top, weird, or self-righteous, even— all because I chose to step out in faith and do what God told me to do. I don’t live in the shadow of other people’s opinions!
I’m not a TV/movie type of person, but I love YouTube. Before I started my blog, there was a podcast I watched that I wasn’t proud of as it was very vulgar and completely worldly and mindless. Watching this content didn’t move me spiritually in any way, and my watching definitely did not bring glory to God. It’s not that there’s anything inherently wrong with watching something mindless every now and then, but when I know it is not something God would be proud of, I have to ask myself “What is even the point?” It’s essentially a waste of my time.
When I started my blog, I completely quit watching that podcast. It wasn’t a conscious decision I made at that time; it was just something I naturally quit finding interest in. It’s something that naturally fell out of my life as I began to live in my purpose, in my authenticity.
I say all of this to say: write the book, start the blog, the YouTube channel, the podcast! Sometimes we have things about us that we aren’t proud of, and this can keep us from living out our purpose because we are afraid of being not being able to live up to what we set out to do. When I first thought about starting a Christian blog, I wondered if I was “good enough” to even have a platform. The truth is, though, no one is perfect. We are not called to be perfect; we are called to be authentic.
The gift of authenticity is the freedom we experience when we choose to be who God created us to be without the need for anyone else’s approval. Choosing to be authentic is choosing to be free.
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