I've always said my life is a holy, messy mix of grit and glory. Mostly grit.
Yes... Mostly grit.
To only share my glories---my few and far-between shining moments of mountaintop victory---would be a disservice. To the world. To me. To God.
To only share my successes---and to leave out my more common stumblings and weaknesses and failures---would paint an untrue, and unrealistic, picture of my life.
To only share challenges in the past tense---once they've been redeemed and God's worked my "all things" into good---would be unauthentic. No matter how authentic I think I'm being.
To only share my resurrections without inviting you to partake in my deaths, to only shine the light without a true portrayal of my darkness, to only let you see my faith while hiding my nagging doubts... to do that is to not share my story well.
There is more redemptive power in my unveiled grit than I will ever realize.
We easily assume our brokenness will drive others away or somehow portray a skewed image of God. But that couldn't be further from the truth.
Brokenness resonates, for we all face pain and doubt and weakness. Our lives are filled with complementary contradictions. It's in our honest sharing of that tension that we speak straight into people's hearts.
We can't cut out the heartache and pain. We can't detour around the ugly parts. We can't leave out the uphill journey. We simply can't.
I wish we could.
Because while I value this kind of heartwrenching transparency, I also struggle with it. Deep down, I'm afraid of it.
But I can't avoid the truth that I have to surrender my ashes for Him to make them beautiful.
I've never heard that message more poignantly captured and conveyed than at STORY. It was the thread that ran through every session, speaker, song, and moment.
Over and over again, reminding us that our stories are about both death and life.
And as uncomfortable as it is, we are called to show the world both.
Because if we can't do that, how do we suppose we can share the Gospel---the most unsettlingly paradoxical story of all?
It is the seen and the unseen.
The now and the not yet.
It is darkness and the light that pierces it.
Faith mixed with doubt.
Freedom in surrender.
Wholeness in brokenness.
It is questions and answers.
Believing without seeing.
Pain and healing.
Despair and hope.
It is beautiful ashes.
Death and life.
Our stories---as shared through our very lives---more beautifully and divinely tell His story than any sermon, song, or production ever could.
We are called to paint the whole picture.
To tell the whole story.
To uniquely reflect Him in our unfinishedness.
In embracing the extraordinary tension of our lives, we amplify His voice to the world.
He is writing a masterpiece in us. In you. In me. The least I can do is get out of the way and allow Him to speak through my glory and shout through my grit...
Mostly my grit.