“When I was eight,” confesses Brennan Manning, “the impostor, or false self, was born as a defense against pain. The impostor within whispered, ‘Brennan, don’t ever be your real self anymore because nobody likes you as you are. Invent a new self that everybody will admire and nobody will know.’” (Excerpt from The Rabbi’s Heartbeat)
I had lived behind a mask watching people labor through life’s difficult circumstances with an empty compassion; never offering much grace. With a distorted myopic view of my present reality, I chose to see people going through the motions of life expecting sympathy without any hope of a new tomorrow. I had convinced myself that they followed some scripted destiny with hopeless desperation. My perspective was so distorted.
With self-righteous arrogance, I would judge people because of the reckless choices they made, always offering condemnation instead of my love. Over time, my inside reality became rooted with a deep contempt fueled at the expense of others. No one could have ever convinced me that my problems resulted from reckless choices I had made, as I silenced any criticism from others. I was about to look into the mirror and confront the real me. I never realized that the imposter was me.
It’s amazing the extent we go to try to hide our brokenness and failures. Somehow we have come to believe that failure means we are weak or that we are not good enough. The world tells us that if we can avoid exposing who we really are than we can control other’s perception of us. We become locked into the cycle. We don’t want to be exposed, we operate out of fear and we allow pride to take root in our hearts and our real selves stay in hiding and we lose our hearts. Coming out of hiding will cost you. It will be difficult and rough at first, but it’s exactly the place where God shows up and wraps His grace around us! This is where we begin to taste real freedom as the shame, hurt and failure is exposed. The process of redemption comes as our stuff is exposed.
Are you living life as your true authentic self?
What are you hiding behind?
It’s time to start living life as your authentic self.
Source: Heartstone – Tim Young/Adapted BH