"One man pretends to be rich, yet has nothing; another pretends to be poor, yet has great wealth" - Solomon, Proverbs 13:7 - Laughed out loud reading this one, thinking about how our society has mastered the art of fronting. We finance our image at high interest rates. We're broke but we've got bling. Truly wealthy people have a different mindset, different priorities…I don't want to be a poser.
That was a quote from Steve Furtick' s most recent blog post. This guy's passion for God and winning the lost has led Elevation Church in Charlotte to grow to thousands in just a couple years. Pray for Furtick and his team.
Yesterday we talked about living a selfless life of humility set to do what God calls us to do. I want to head down that same road again today and discuss another of our core values at The Community Fellowship. It is the need of authenticity, of being real. Far too many people put up a front, as Furtick said "mastering the art of fronting", that is false and totally fake. We are in fact, bankrupt. Maybe not at zero dollars but at a zero in the spiritual realm or in our relationships.
The people around us long for what is real. Kids and teens can tell when you aren't real. Lots of people can tell, too. Best yet, God knows the truth. He knows it all. Are we willing to be honest with God?
In one of our small groups last night we talked about being honest with God in our prayer life. No, that is not easy because we have been taught, for the most part, that we need to be kind and pray the right words. Hog-wash (a Greek word for ya there). Get honest with God. Tell Him how you feel (He already knows). Humility may not feel good, but humility is right. Think about it!
James 4:6 (nlt) --- ... As the Scriptures say,"God opposes the proud but favors the humble."
Psalm 149:4 (nlt) --- For the Lord delights in his people; he crowns the humble with victory.
Philippians 2:3 (nlt) --- Don't be selfish; don't try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.
Not everyone agrees with this point, but one way at The Community that we flesh this out is in what we wear. Yeah, others say we ought to wear our best for God at church. Be honest. When you've dressed up to go to church or somewhere else, did you do that to honor God or to bring attention to yourself? You know the truth.
Stop putting on the mask. Stop putting up a front so you will look good to others and be real. Know what I have found? When we get real, we will have a bigger impact on the people we are trying to serve.
I did something this last Sunday on purpose (and I might get in trouble for sharing this, but what the heck). From time to time I will line our Community leadership team up in front of our people during our Sunday morning worship experience and just share a little. I asked our team to share what they do and what need they have in their lives. When done, I mentioned that each of us have troubles, and what I meant was, we are broken people, hurting and in big need of God. Realize, we need God. Realize that we have to must stop lying to ourselves and to others and get real about what is going on in our lives. It will make a difference.
Proverbs 11:2; 13:10; 16:18; 29:23 (nlt) --- Pride leads to disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom ... Pride leads to conflict; those who take advice are wise ... Pride goes before destruction,and haughtiness before a fall ... Pride ends in humiliation, while humility brings honor.
The opposite of pride is humility. The opposite of fake is real. I challenge you to be authentic before God and others. Start today.