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Living with your flaws

I’m going to write a flawed blog post this morning before going to NYC. Partially to prove a point, hoping that you can complete it with your comments, and partially because I’m rushed.   So, it’s about identity and insecurity. I see so many insecure people living under the weight of th…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
I’m going to write a flawed blog post this morning before going to NYC. Partially to prove a point, hoping that you can complete it with your comments, and partially because I’m rushed.
 
So, it’s about identity and insecurity. I see so many insecure people living under the weight of their all-too obvious flaws and I know that there is an answer. People make peace with their flaws all the time – why not be one? 
 
Identity can be such a precarious thing. As a teenager, I felt like I could never get my head above water. I was constantly struggling to feel OK about myself, but my flaws kept getting in the way.
 
I was undersized – a late bloomer. My skin kept breaking out. I didn’t feel like I excelled at anything.
My mom would tell me it wasn’t that way at all. She saw me as handsome and popular.
But I knew she didn’t have any choice but to say that. “All moms tell their kids that, mom,” I’d say, writing her off completely.
My flaws were ever before me and I lived under a cloud of inadequacy.
A family member still lives in that place and I can relate to her. It’s a horrible place to live. You don’t want to try anything because your battered sense of identity can’t take another blow.
How do you ever get out of that suffocating place? 
When the spotlight is on your flaws, you can’t. So to get to where you can breathe again, you have to somehow escape that place of condemnation.
To be able to breathe again, you need to find a community where you can be affirmed and even celebrated.
So many churches aspire to be this. “Grace Community” some have named themselves. But are they really?
I don’t know how you can be any kind of community when you only get together once or twice a week. An AA group is a grace community. They put their flaws out there, not as a defining feature, but as a way of creating space for grace. 
The only way to have grace is to have flaws.
 
If I could pray over you this morning, I would pray, “Be at peace, son or daughter of the most high God. He loves you and made you as you are for a purpose. He wants you to discover the purpose. And one of the reasons he’s given you your flaws is so that you’ll rely on him in achieving it.”
 
What would you pray? What advice would you give? All I know is that we need each other to feel OK despite our flaws.

Comments (4)

  • Seth,

    Thank you for reminding us that we’re human and although our Father sees us through the filter of Jesus, he also sees our flaws. Despite our failings, He loves us with a never-ending love. I think that only when we fully believe in that love can we love ourselves…then others.

    Godspeed!

  • Just dealing with this in me, yet again!

    Quick illustration I heard the other day:
    Imagine you are $10,000 in debt and no way to pay it.
    You cry out to God. That day he sends a man, “I want to give you $10,000.” You reluctantly and yet gratefully accept the money. You are freed of your debt. It feels wonderful.
    The next day another man comes to give you $10,000. Now when you accept you begin to think of what you can do with this blessing. Handle some things that you’ve put off. Help a friend in need…
    You wake up the next day with a feeling you’ve never known. You have enough. But, that day another man comes to bless you with another $10,000. What??? Now when you accept you have another brand new feeling, abundance.
    The next day, and the next day, and the next…until the end of your life you receive this continuous blessing.

    No where in Scripture does it say that GRACE ever ends. It is constantly and lavishly poured out into our lives.
    Our challenge is to learn that abundance is not is not the time to stop and consider ourselves to have arrived. Rather, for the believer, it is to be harvested, stored and dispersed to those He shows us that also need the “$10,000” a day.

    Flaws and failings are often the method that God provides to teach us humility. Humility, if we allow it to, can produce more strength in us that pride ever could. We are the ones that carry past failures into our present and future. The only times He brings them up are to release us from them. Each day is new, start again to see His grace, mercy and love poured lavishly out on you.

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



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