Don?t Read This If You Have It All Together

I hate it when I mess up. ?Especially when other people see it.

I don?t like others to see my weakness. ?I don?t want people to think less of me. ?Because I?m smart enough, I?m good enough and doggone it people like me. ?And I don?t think I?m alone.

We want to project an image that we have it all together. We don?t want others to see our deficiencies. ?It?s a natural human tendency to want to cover our sins and failures.

Adam and Eve tried to hide after they sinned. Rather than coming to God and saying, Father we blew it, please forgive us, they hid. ?That began the first cover-up.

The root of this is pride. We want to project an image. ?We want to look good in other?s eyes. ?We think too highly of ourselves. ?We think we?re better than we really are. ?We think our own evaluation of ourselves or our actions is more accurate than others. ?I might think I knocked it out of the park with a Sunday message, only to find out afterward that I wasn?t especially clear or went too long or my opening illustration fell flat.

Our pride leads us to get defensive when others criticize or question us. ?What do you mean I made a mistake or could have done a better job? ?I wasn?t angry, I wasn?t yelling. ?I was just trying to emphasize a point. ?I wasn?t unkind and insensitive – I?m the kindest human being on earth. ?At least in my mind. ?Yes, it?s humbling for others to see your failures.

We crave the approval of men. This is inverted fear of man. ?I wouldn?t be ashamed to be weak on a desert island because no one else would see it. ?No one would be there to think less of me.

But I don?t live on a desert island. ?And God has placed me in a family and a church with other sinners who will see, experience and often point out my sins, failures and weakness. ?But it?s good for me. ?Here?s why:

We must always expect to meet with new proofs of our own weakness and insufficiency; otherwise how should we be kept humble, or know how to prize the liberty He allows us of coming to the throne of grace, for fresh forgiveness and direction every day?–John Newton.

God loves us so much he will regularly prove to us our ?weakness and insufficiency? to keep us humble, dependent on him, and grateful we can come to our great high priest for mercy and grace and help.

I’m a pastor at Saving Grace Church in Indiana, PA. I’m married to Kristi, have 5 kids, and a growing number of grandkids. I enjoy songwriting, oil painting and coffee, not necessarily in that order.