Today’s reading is from 1 Corinthians 2:1-16.

Authenticity is on my mind today as we traverse life.

Many times, we “put on a face” of everything in our lives is great.  Our job could not be better.  Our kids are thriving and happy.  Our marriage is like a fairy tale. We just completed the greatest vacation we have ever had, and it could not have been more restful and relaxing!

Is that how your life feels?

I am not afraid to say that life can be a struggle and brings about a fresh set of challenges.  I believe my state of mind and expectations drive my response.  My response to these challenges varies based on the day, what else is going on, and my state of mind.  I am human.  I am imperfect.  I don’t always react to challenges the way I should.

Most importantly, I think we need to surround ourselves with authentic and open relationships where we can share our lives with others in an authentic way.  There is power in understanding that others have similar challenges, others have similar struggles, and know that we are not alone in our attempt to deal with difficulties.

I love how the Apostle Paul writes in this reading with an authentic and vulnerable voice.

1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with the excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God.

3 I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.

4 And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power. NKJV

Life is messy.  Situations do not always turn out like we planned.  We are not always at our best. Relationships are complicated.  Jobs don’t always turn out to be the dream we though they would be.  Vacations do not always end with the blissful moments we had hoped.

I would encourage us to surround ourselves with supportive, faith-filled people, that we can be authentic with.  We should strive to spend time with people that are not afraid to tell us when we are “off the path” and encourage us when we need it.  These are the same people who share with us when they struggle and when they need encouragement. Let us not surround ourselves with people who are not authentic and tell us what they think we want to hear. I pray that we open ourselves up to vulnerability and input from mentors, small groups, and positive influencers in our lives to help us work through difficult situations.

God encourages us to surround ourselves with other believers and commune together. Hebrews 10:24-25 says the following:

24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works. 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some but exhorting one another and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. NKJV

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Chad Bandy

I am a Jesus follower, husband, and father. I am a work in progress who tries to be better each and every day, with the help of Christ.