There is more pressure than ever to have the “perfect resume” that we think we need. We take perfect instagram photos, we have aesthetic filters, we post highlights of our life, and we criticize ourselves over all the small details. While having an aesthetic instagram is not a bad thing, always having a filtered and perfect life on the outside can be. Do you have a place where you take that filter off and you are real, raw, and honest? Do you run to Jesus real, raw, and honest?
When I was in middle school I went with my church to evangelize on the streets in California. One of the first questions we asked the people we would meet was, “Do you know that Jesus loves you?” Some would say yes but most would say, “Well if Jesus knows what I have done he doesn’t love me like you think,” or “Not after what I have done.” This has stuck with me after all these years because I remember my middle school heart was broken knowing that people did not think that Jesus loved them. Sometimes we think we need to have that perfect resume, filters on, and the perfect aesthetic to be loved. We think “if only they knew what I have done they would not love me.” What if I told you that is the farthest thing from the truth? What if the very thing you are scared of uncovering is what is going to make others love you more deeply? The scar that you are trying to cover up could be the very thing someone needs to see in order for them to have hope and healing for their open wound.
I am sure you have heard to Sunday school song about Zacchaeus,
“Zacchaeus was a wee little man,
And a wee little man was he.
He climbed up in a sycamore tree
For the Lord he wanted to see.
And as the Savior passed that way
He looked up in the tree and he said,
Zacchaeus you come down,
For I’m going to your house today!
For I’m going to your house today!”
Zacchaeus was not only a “wee little man,” but he was seen as one of the most disliked people of this time. He was a tax collector and tax collectors were not liked. Not only did he collect everyone’s taxes but he became rich by collecting money unfairly and overtaxing the people. Why would Jesus want to go to his house of all the people in the crowd? A man who was unfair and selfish yet Jesus chose to go to his house? Jesus does not look for the perfect resume to show love. Jesus sits with everyone. Jesus knew if he could get Zacchaeus to drop his walls he could love Zacchaeus deeper. Jesus is waiting for you to drop your walls too. He loves you and wants to see the real you. He knows your sins, the wrongs, and still loves you. He wants to be let into your house too.
The same can be said with our relationship with others too. When I was growing up I was always desiring more from my friendships. I was never satisfied and I felt like I would never find “my people.” If you desire deeper relationships there has to be deeper conversations. I realized that the issue is not always the people I had in my life (which sometimes it is) but the depth of the conversations. If you have surface level conversations you will have surface level friendships. It is hard to drop your walls but it is so worth it when you drop them to the right people. If you drop your walls it gives others the opportunity to drop their walls too. The more transparency you can be in relationships, the more you will connect with others. When there is realness and honesty with people in your life everyone can learn how to serve each other better. We should look at relationships with the attitude of “how can I serve and help you right now?” This is something that the couple months of marriage I have learned is so important. Being real and honest with each other and being able to serve the people in our lives is such a gift.
It is awesome to see people be real and raw on social media now too. The unfiltered photos, the vulnerability, I think it provides us all with a sense of relief and hope. I think it is also something to be careful about though. I remember when I was first vulnerable on instagram I had made this long post about having an eating disorder in hope to encourage someone else. I posted it and immediately had friends texting me. I had not even told some of my closest friends what I was struggling with but I posted it for thousands of strangers to read? It is so important, especially in a place of hard times and hurt, that we run to Jesus first. Next we run to our friends and family for prayers and guidance. Then when the wound has healed and you have a testimony of God’s hope and healing that is when we share on social media if you feel called to.
We were called to have deep connections. In Proverbs 27 verse 17 it talks about how iron sharpens iron and as friends we are to also sharpen each other. A friend speaks truth to you in order to help you live out who God called you to be. Do not be afraid to be vulnerable with a friend. A true God loving friend will strive to do anything they can to help you overcome and reach your full potential.
If you are thinking I do not even have people to be honest with, seek them. Seeking friendships through church, your community, social media, and even work can be intimidating but it is worth it. Sometimes you may have to be the one that starts the conversation or asks to hangout and that is okay. Ask first. Seek intentionally. Be real. Serve eachother. Be the friend that Jesus calls us to be.
Taking off the filter can be hard but our beauty and worth come from Jesus not some perfect resume we try to portray.
Kassidy cheered in college at Navarro College and is now a personal trainer while using fitness to lead others to Christ. She strives to encourage women to be confident in who God created them to be. She lives in Texas currently and loves cooking, working out, flowers, and boba!
Follow Kassidy on Instagram @kassidy.brougham