MOVING TOWARDS AUTHENTICITY
“Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are.” – Brene Brown
Letting go of who I think I’m supposed to be means letting go of my perfect parenting notions in favor of parenting the child I was given, with the skills I currently possess.
My six-year-old and I are in conflict as I write this. She has the exact same anger and rage issues that I had as a six-year-old girl. When she and I are at odds, she hits, kicks, and screams. I say too much, cop an attitude, and hold a grudge which can be felt in my body language.
When we are in a season with this kind of behavior, my inner critic shows up and says I’m not “good enough” as a parent.
We have all wrestled with the thought of not being “good enough.” So, why bother to share this internal battle with anyone? It feels safer to pretend these thoughts never existed.
But, Brene Brown says, “If you trade your authenticity for safety, you may experience the following: anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addiction, rage, blame, resentment, and inexplicable grief.”
Letting go of who I’m supposed to be means sharing the hard stuff with a few of my Christian friends in a small group. In my case, my small group of women I study the Bible with. It means letting them in on the inner struggles, my own bad behavior, and the difficulties of parenting.
Authenticity is not about sharing an open wound on social media. It’s not about shouting to the world in anger. Those things are easy to do.
Authenticity is about letting a few Christian friends see what’s really going on in your heart, and letting them speak into the mess and the brokenness and the shame. This path of sanctification also leads to growth in faith.
Being authentic is messy and hard and requires the grace of God.
For the body of Christ, practicing authenticity is a way of strengthening our muscles. These are the muscles that allow us to glorify God as we move towards others in love.
Connection & Communication Architect