Let's get real.
I'm not going to sugarcoat this.
I've recently been rejected.
It hurts when you really feel like you didn't do anything wrong.
I was just being real.
I'm trained in conflict resolution. I used to teach it to middle schoolers. If someone has a legitimate beef with me, or I have done wrong, or hurt someone's feelings--I will own up to it. I will take responsibility for my actions. I will seek understanding and resolution and forgiveness and reconciliation. There are steps that have to be taken for hearts to be mended and relationships to be strengthened.
That being said, what's jarring about this?
I've been rejected by Christians. By a Christian organization.
And why? I have a pretty good idea.
For being too REAL. Being too transparent.
It made some people uncomfortable.
I've been really seeking God's opinion on this subject.
Wondering: Am I out of line? Have I said too much? Did I stick my foot in my mouth?
Trust me, it's not like I say things and skip away feeling all wonderful, I'm so great. No, instead, I walk away and the critic is there spewing in my ear all sorts of garbage. I usually feel quite ill.
I have to remember that the critic doesn't want the truth spoken. He doesn't want understanding or resolution or forgiveness or reconciliation. He thrives on discord and drama and confusion and broken relationships.
At several Conflict Management sessions I used to teach that the Chinese character for conflict is the same as the one for opportunity. (Whether that's actually true or not, I'd have to investigate.)
Conflict is an opportunity for change. If people in conflict are willing to be open, then change can happen. Change is growth. To want change, you have to be real. We all know change is hard. Some people just don't have any interest in changing. Or being real.
There is a difference with being real and being right. You can be real: haughty, prideful, rude, unloving, unforgiving, etc. etc. Sure, you're being "real"--those are real emotions, but are you being "right?"
Being real requires being real with yourself (all your mess) first. It requires humility.
I'm no drama mama.
Yet, I'm not afraid of the drama.I know that being real has consequences and ramifications.
Where injustice and untruth lies--I will call it out.
When I see that my wretchedness, my mess, my yuck, my mistakes and my sin will benefit and breathe life into others--I will divulge it.
I can't keep quiet. That's not who God made me.
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.
I'm getting over the hurt. I choose to forgive those who have rejected me. I have even apologized for anything I might have said that offended anyone.
I'm open to the opportunity to change. That change has been letting that organization go. Move on.
I'm not here to be liked.
I'm here to be like HIM.
I will continue to be real. Because, what's real? Jesus.
He has changed who I am and made me real.
I had a friend tell me the other day that she appreciated how real I was. She commended my transparency. She said that most people can't be real. We all have issues and struggle--but most people aren't real--they hide their "things."
I can't tell you how much it meant for me to hear this from this friend.
I'd rather be disliked for saying too much, rather than saying too little.
I will be real.
I will not hide.
Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.