By Quin Jackson
Local Outreach Student Leader
“He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.” (Psalm 25:9)
Thanksgiving has come and gone. Now it’s time to break out the Christmas tree, Michael Bublé’s infamous Christmas album and all the home decor. As the holiday season approaches, we find ourselves surrounded by plenty of family and friends. For some, there is nothing more comforting in the world, while for others, this scene sounds a bit daunting.
As much as we all love the people in our lives that make the holidays what they are, there’s something about gathering together and catching everyone up on our life that is intimidating. Do you ever feel a little pressured to have it all together, especially when you’re surrounded by people asking you if you have it all together? I know I do.
In fact, sometimes when I’m with these people, especially around the holidays, I find myself exaggerating just how “well” I’m doing – even if I’m not doing well at all. I extrapolate the plans I have for my future, when in reality, I’m freaking out about them. I appear calm, cool and collected, when on the inside, I couldn’t feel any more of the opposite.
People tell you, “Don’t air your dirty laundry in public.” Although I agree that it’s important to consider time and place when speaking of personal matters, I don’t know if I want to live my life hiding the not-so-pretty parts, and I don’t think Jesus wants me to either. I don’t want to hide behind my “Christmas best,” embellishing my life while wearing my best clothes and surrounded by people that I am trying to impress. Rather, I want the people in my life to know me and where I’m truly at, the good and the bad.
Humility is the act of trusting God, others and maybe even yourself with who you truly are. By living in humility, we can genuinely begin to feel the love that people have for us. If we choose to not live in humility and to hide our “dirty laundry” or the things we don’t necessarily like about ourselves, how could we ever feel loved? People wouldn’t really know us – or at least all of us. Surely if they knew everything, they wouldn’t be as kind, inviting or loving, right?
WRONG. Friends, hear me when I say this: That is a lie from the enemy. When we are transparent, we are free. When we tell Satan that our past mistakes or current struggles have no hold on our spirit, we can rejoice and truly feel the love and peace of God. 1 Peter 5:6-7 reminds us, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” Take that dirty laundry to God, humbly, and He will lift you up.
Again, I’m not suggesting that we share our whole selves or stories with everyone we meet upon introduction, but I don’t think we should hesitate to be transparent for the sake of avoiding “burdening others” or “making anyone uncomfortable.” You are your story, and God is working within it! There will come a time in your life when you will reflect on whatever phase of life you are in right now, and you will be able to see how God was shaping you into the person He designed you to be and the person that He will use to build His kingdom – dirty laundry and all.
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