Have you ever told someone or have someone tell you to “get real” (or at least seen it in a movie)? For some reason they think the other person is not being real or genuine…that maybe they are faking a response or action. Or perhaps they are thinking that the other person is just old school or weird or something. Well, whatever the case, the comment is made and it poses an immediate challenge one must ask themself: “Am I being real?”
Someone who is real is genuine…they don’t put up a fake front, they don’t hide their faults (they don’t necessarily tell the world either, but at least they’ll readily admit it), and most importantly, they live out what they truly believe. As Christians, I think we need to constantly “get real” with ourselves. Are we truly living what we believe? Are we living out our faith or does how we live our lives show that our faith is somewhere else? Honestly, this is a question I ask myself frequently and on many occasions, don’t end up on the positive side of the answer. I believe God is control…that He is trustworthy, faithful, and that He will work all things for the good of those who love Him (Rom 8:28), but yet I worry. So am I being real in my faith and trusting in God, or am I trusting in myself? I have an emotionally exhausting day and all I want to do is come home, find rest by watching TV, a movie or by playing the Wii…but am I living out my faith by going to Jesus who promises to give me rest (Mt 11:28)? What about tithing, helping others, praying, devotions, relationships, etc.? Am I living out my faith in God’s provision, His Spirit working in me, His daily sustenance or am I living out my faith in someone else – like myself? I mention the above struggles not to get down on myself or to seek advice, but to take a brief, yet honest assessment of my faith in everyday action and would challenge you to do the same. I’m afraid that I am not alone in believing one thing, but often living another…Can you relate?
You are what you eat, right?….Well, you live what you truly believe. This is a scary thought, but at least when we take an honest assessment, we are getting real with ourselves…even if it’s not what we want to see. Then we know where we will need to align our faith with our actions and can move forward in our faith in Him.
I’ve heard it said that faith is like a muscle, the more you exercise it, the more it strengthens…the more you do not exercise it, the more it atrophies. James says that if we have faith (that is, believe that Jesus died on the cross for our sins, etc.) but do not have actions that follow our faith, then our faith is meaningless…it’s dead (Jam 2:14-26). Since we are saved by grace through faith (Eph 2:8), we should prayerfully and fervently ask ourselves if our everyday actions follow our faith in God, or in ourselves (do it my way), others (spouse, boss), or other things (TV, alcohol, etc.). So let’s do that. Let’s get real with ourselves and let’s get real with our faith. And if you need help, send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Blessings!