Updated: Aug 14, 2022
How do you do it all?
People ask me this all the time. Sometimes, I’m not sure it’s admiration or more shade. My perfectionistic answer is I’m organized…or my 100% is everybody else’s 70% (read the arrogance in that statement) or I give some lesson on my calendaring and goal setting system (which I do have by the way– but I don’t keep it up).
My authentic answer however, is “sometimes well, sometimes not so well.”
In this answer I hold the tension of the good and challenging. I seek to show that 100% of the time I’m not late for appointments, remembering picture day, dreading expense reports, or keeping the house lookin’ like those on HGTV, forgetting a bill and the list goes on.
Part of authenticity is sharing the truth and not putting on airs. As a 3 on the Enneagram, y’all I can lie to myself and believe it! That’s some serious stuff. So I strive in my personal reflection and communication to be confessional.
Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. James 5:16 ESV What does it mean to be authentic? What does it mean to be authentic and why would you practice this in your ministry?If you want your team or the people with whom you serve to experience you are credible and trustworthy you need to be authentic. A person who is honest with themselves as well as one who can name reality without sugar coating what's real. For in naming reality, you can begin to cast vision. I think old models of church and leading said keep a distance (and we do need healthy boundaries) and at the same time, these days if you are not approachable and relatable you don't earn a hearing. So what might this look like - authenticity in our leadership?
First, it’s telling the truth.
In sermons for example, what’s the truth about how you’re living into the thing you’re preaching? Perhaps you used to be bad at a thing and now you’re good at it. Share that. Maybe you still struggle to be live into a certain characteristic. Sharing that is being self aware and authentic.
Second, authenticity is about being. It’s about who you be … (i know that’s not correct English but it’s what I want to say). Brene Brown talks about the difference between belonging and. fitting in. Fitting in is doing what it takes to appear like others. Belonging is being you (whether or not others accept you).
Do you know what it’s like to fit in? To keep changing up with the hopes of being liked? It’s exhausting to shape shift like this all the time. Over time you can confuse yourself because you won’t know who you are anymore - only who you are with certain people.
Third, recalling the original question “how do you do it all,” there’s room to examine showing up authentically by offering compliments. Perhaps what could be said instead is:
I admire how you get things done, I can learn from you.
It’s so brave of you to show up.
Authenticity calls us to see the courage in others knowing that courage is also vulnerability. That in the same way we have the sun and moon both kinds of light are what make up life. And neither light is to be vilified or expected solely.
So call in all the light the next time you answer a question, preach, offer care, sit with a friend, hold a board meeting, or speak with a partner, sibling, or child.
Action Brings Clarity: Consider an area of your ministry, how you will call in the light into this area of ministry? Take two minutes before clmoving to the next thing and answer this question either silently or type your reply in a note on your phone or voice memo or journal. Just two minutes while it's fresh.
Stay True! > Charity