Let’s face it, we live in a society and world full of posers. There is not a single one of us, man or woman that is beyond this. No matter how subtle it may be, we all pose or have posed in some way in our lives, and I don’t care who you are, you will likely do it again at some point in the future. None of us are beyond it. The poser has its roots in mankind from the very beginning as we all know. Following the Fall in Genesis 3, what did Adam and Eve do? They hid. They hid themselves from God. It has plagued us from the very beginning.
The question from it all is why do we continue to do this? What is our motivation to hide and pose? Why is it so hard to just live authentically and no matter what, let our junk hang out there for people to see. John Eldredge wrote in Wild at Heart, that the deepest fear of of every man is “to be exposed, to be found out, to be discovered as an imposter, and not really a man.” In their book Captivating, John and Stasi Eldredge write that “Every woman knows now that she is not what she was meant to be. And she fears that soon it will be known…”
We have such a great fear of being found out that we hide behind so many things in life. That the world will condemn us if we allow people see the issues we struggle with, the sins and addiction we are consumed with, and the wounds and weaknesses that we have come to accept and live with. Then we fear that if we are found out that we will destroy the very fabric of everything we hold dear in our lives, including our families.
I have come to an inescapable conclusion though. When we are in Christ centered relationships with our spouses, our families, and friends there is no need to hide. Everyone who has grown to truly learn about living authentically and the authenticity that Jesus showed us all, knows that we have all jacked it up and posed in some way and will love you and walk with you through all of that.
I look at my wife Amber. I was afraid of her finding me out for the poser I had grown to become and hated to see in the mirror everyday. When it was all exposed and laid out though, she loved me through it all. I realized, also that because of God’s radical love and undeserved redeeming grace, that He also loved me through my faults. He knew where I was screwing up and continued to pursue me. I remember drawing out this timeline of my life with all of the highs and lows while I was on campus at Liberty University. The Holy Spirit revealed to me through that, the Lord’s unending pursuit and that fact that He has not given up on any of us.
We have to learn to live authentically. To shed the fig leaf and let ourselves stand exposed and not fear the condemnation of what people in this life will say. Know that we have all have and will screw up. There’s no need to hide. Deal with it directly. Pray on it, confess it, and allow people around you to pray with you and for you and walk with you through it. Amber and I are so blessed to have the church family that we do. People that we have grown to love dearly and know that if and when we struggle, there are people there that will walk with us through it, just as Amber and I stand by each other no matter what we face.
Brené Brown shared that “Authenticity is the true measure of courage.” How true this is. Look at the way Jesus walked and lived. He lived authentically and was not afraid to be exposed. He did not hide and instead confronted evil directly. How important it is for each us to learn that we too can live that way. We won’t do it perfectly, but damn it if we can’t try are best each day. It takes effort and it takes courage to not hide behind the fig leaf any longer and rather walk in freedom of authenticity . We are each free to live this way, but we have to choose do so. It starts with allowing Christ to come into the brokenness and hidden places of our hearts that have we have kept away from others. I’ve seen and experienced myself what it means to finally shed the poser, the false self, and just let Christ in. Allow Him to come into those places, expose them, as much as it hurts, and then the freedom that comes with that healing and restoration.
We are not all the way there way. It will be a life time of prayer and daily restoration and sanctification for each of us. We have not yet become who we were meant to be, but we can continue strive for and pursue that with each passing day. It starts with the moment of real conviction by the Holy Spirit and confession, and then the process of healing and restoration can begin. You no longer have to live in fear of being exposed. Who cares what someone else may think of how you live or who you are. Your identity is not found in that, but only in who you are, restored in Christ and as God’s image bearer. The Father is pursuing you and wants to show you who really are and who you were meant to be. Open your heart. All Him to come in and expose the hidden places of the heart and the freedom you will find is greater than anything else you’d ever experience in life. Trust me.
“Here they are, Lord Jesus, my hidden sins. I bring them out of the secret chamber of my heart. I take them out of the darkness and expose them to Your light. Lord, You have promised You will execute Your word upon the earth, thoroughly and quickly. Oh God, thoroughly cleanse my heart; purify me quickly!” – Francis Frangipane