I had just completed a marathon in Orlando... 26.2 miles of insanity, aching muscles, and screaming pain in my knee. That smile was not real. Sure I was proud– but I was also a little out of my mind with exhaustion. My kids were starving and only stopped arguing long enough to evade Mama making a scene. They were promised a big breakfast and a quick trip to Epcot when I was finished so we all managed a smile to commemorate the moment and broke into arguing the next moment. Do you have any pics like this or am I the only one who could produce half a dozen in the last two days from the gallery on my cell phone?
But this picture is more like it:
We were all posing for the annual Christmas picture with my husband’s family. We set the timer and proceeded to configure ourselves while the timer counted down. It didn’t care if we were ready or not and the only one who was focused was my son- the boy we are always yelling at to stay focused. Go figure. This is one of my favorite family pictures EVER. It shows the real relationships in our family and the little bit of crazy that makes our family our own.
Most people that we share our pictures with will politely smile and make passive comments about the posed, traditional pictures– but those quirky little moments of reality that have been frozen in time always bring laughs. So why in the world do we duplicate the fake smiles and scripted moments in our everyday lives? Isn’t there some freedom in being the unique person full of life, love, and mess that you have been created to be? If your life is remotely like mine I find myself comparing my hair, kitchen gadgets, nail color, inifinity scarves, book choices, and extracurricular activities to others. That kind of comparison robs others from the unique blessing of you.
Our precious Lord breathed in to you and dotted your life with intricacies that set you apart from any other person that has ever lived. Use those intricacies to make your moments bold and colorful because the last thing this world needs is more fake smiles, fake promises, and fake people. Someone needs to hear your story and see the you that is set apart.
Here’s the words straight from Jesus Himself:
“Go back home to your own people, and report to them how much the Lord has done for you and how He has had mercy on you.” Mark 5:19b Note the noticeable absence of statements like:
“Try to copy thy neighbors story and tell it again in thine own words.”
“Clean up thy redemption story so it makes you look better than you actually are.”
“Stage-eth your smiles. Pretend thou art holier than thou hath ever truly been.”
Your story is yours for a reason and the people you encounter need the life that it brings. So get out there and share your unstaged, unrehearsed, unflattering, unbiased, and unmatched story with someone who needs to know they aren’t alone in their un-perfect mess.
Author: Tammy DePew
Amanda Williams is a forty-year old wife and mother of two who can still swing her pony tail and display just a tad of sass. She is also a Jesus loving girl who realizes she is nothing without the One who saved her. Amanda has two degrees specializing in serving students with special needs and is currently working in the field of Leadership Development. She is a Christian author, speaker, blogger, and publisher who loves serving beside her husband at her local place of worship, First Baptist Church of Ocala.