I know most of my blogs are about regular, unserious topics such as “The Caf’,” but today I feel compelled to write a bit from the heart (sorry to those who prefer the average, silly version of Blake).
If you’re reading this and you’re in high school, you might be able to resonate with the following phrase: “That person is fake.”
We all encounter people who are “fake,” or, in other words, people whose outward appearance doesn’t correspond to who they really are. I don’t know about you but in high school I had quite a habit of pointing fingers at other people who seemed “fake” or acted in a way that didn’t quite feel authentic.
Looking back on my high school days, I'm coming to realize more and more that if anyone’s outward appearance didn’t correspond to who they really were, it was me. And for some reason, as I committed to Biola, I thought that going to a Christian university would magically poof my fake-ness away.
I realized pretty quickly that being real and transparent with people 24/7 wasn’t something that could be achieved overnight, or, for me, even a whole semester; and I’m still constantly striving not to be “fake.” Here are some ways I have been able to reduce the fake-ness in my own life.
Seek to be transparent in every interaction.
Obviously, this is easier said than done. For a lot of my first semester, I was constantly calculating how I could achieve a certain status in the eyes of others. I had become so used to acting the way I wanted others to view me, it was sort of subconscious. A question I constantly ask myself is, “Am I going to rely on myself to be justified by others or am I going to rely on a better source of justification?”
Tell people you trust the worst thing you’ve done.
Okay, that sounds a bit intense, but I think simply saying “be vulnerable” can be a bit redundant. Something that has seriously helped me form transparent relationships in a Christian community (this can be surprisingly difficult thing to achieve) is being honest about the uneasy truth of bad decisions I’ve made or dark seasons I’ve gone through. There are a number of people who I have built relationships of mutual trust and been able to talk about those things that are often times too shameful to share.
If you are hesitant about this, just think about what Paul has to say in 2 Corinthians 12:9-10:
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
Seek direction from an expert.
I like to think of God as “the King of Truth” or “the King of Not-Being-Fake.” Since God created truth itself, I imagine he knows it better than anyone. Talking about tackling the issue of being “fake” could go on for a long time, but the most important reminder for me has been to seek wisdom and transformation from the expert of being real. It’s easy for me to try so hard to be real that I actually end up being real-ly fake.
I hope my blog has been encouraging or helpful in whatever fake-ness you may be experiencing, whether it’s yourself or someone else, and whether you’re in high school, college, or 40 years old.
Keep it real!
Sincerely,Becoming Biola Blogger Blakey