We all have questions – there is no doubt. It does’t matter if those questions surround our parenting, our ability to manage at work, or the faith that we have in God. Questions are inevitable.
There was article several months back in Christianity Today titled, “Seven Lies Christians Tell”. As with most articles like this – I am immediately intrigued and hardly ever surprised when I read the content. If you’re curious – please feel free to read the article here. I’m just going to focus on ONE of the lies we tell.
#1 on the list. “We lie when we claim to be more confident than we really are.”
I don’t know about you, but not many people enjoy hanging out with “know it alls”. Those that seem to have all the answers (even though half of the stuff that comes out of their mouths smells like… you know) and they usually leave little to no margin for errors or false assumptions. So whether they appear as an apple fan boy, a political insider, or a historical professor – they’re usually just taking something they are passionate about to the extreme end of “know-it-all-ism”. If this is you… I have no doubt that you will discount the rest of this blog.
I personally struggle from being an over-confident individual – however it’s not usually in my knowledge as much as it is about who I am (I tend to think I’m quite an awesome human). I’m not sure if its’ my age either, but for every year God gives me on this planet – I feel as if I know less and less ABOUT all the stuff in my world. On the flip side, the few things I feel I do know something about are much deeper and more proven than when I was in my twenties.
When men and women of faith claim to have zero doubts and issues with how life and faith intersect, I get concerned. I’m concerned, not primarily because they are lying to others – I’m concerned because I fear they are lying to themselves. James wrote about it a couple thousand years ago (James 1:22-25) and compared this kind of person as to someone who looks in the mirror and sees all – but walks away and quickly forgets what they’ve just seen. This is becoming more and more of an issue in our current culture because many of us are quick to react and respond (in social media usually) to things we are not sure about but feel the need to share our unsolicited opinions or simply jump on the band wagon that looks the best to us.
When you are not being honest with yourselves about the questions you have, you become a faker. The brilliant poet Taylor Swift reminds me often when I’m in the car with my daughter that “Fakers are gonna fake, fake fake” and then gives us the amazing wisdom that we all need to “shake, shake, shake it off”.
Struggling parents don’t need to see other parents “faking it” – they need to see other parents share their own struggles.
Hurting marriages don’t need to see other couples “faking it” – they need to do life with couples who can be real about the gaps in their relationships and what they are doing to try to improve.
Employees don’t need another inspiring talk from a boss that tells them to “fake it until they make it” – they need someone who can identify with their lost passion, challenges, and doubts about what they are spending 8-10 hours a day doing.
And most importantly – Christians don’t need to see other Christians “fake it” – they need to see other men and women of faith voice their questions and concerns on the gaps they feel and then come together as a group to garner collective wisdom about those issues. (Acts 2:42-44)
Don’t be a faker. Don’t convince yourself to more confident in something you have serious doubts and questions about?
Ask for help from someone you trust. Speak openly about those issues within your faith community. Don’t spend another day lying to yourself… or to others.