Yesterday was Reformation Sunday for us and the sermon made me think about our own falsehoods. The Sermon title was “Quakery vs The Truth.”
Maybe it was the urge to clean house before A Week in the Life began (which I didn’t do), some of the things I’ve read lately that inspired me or made me think, or just the way I’ve alway felt, but as Pastor defined Quacks and Quackery (and a few duck “quacks” were heard within the congregation) and then as he began to talk about medical or political quacks, I could help but turn that inward initially thinking about what we post online.
I took this picture with a self timer (or maybe I had Cody take it, I can’t really remember) in 2013 and honestly I love it. There’s the laundry piled up. Me working at the table, my hair a little funky. It’s real life. I didn’t clean up for this photo.
That Laundry, it’s still there- Okay, not that laundry but a bunch of laundry that I never put away over the weekend. The table is covered in art supplies and bits. I gave up trying to pretend we’d ever eat at that table and now use it for art space. Yet, I feel myself fighting the urge to crop all that mess I see out of my pictures for A Week in the Life. It seems as I get ready to take pictures, the messy truth keeps revealing itself in my life. It’s not always easy to be real in life.
A Quack. A Pretender. A Fraud.
Does that ever apply to you? Do you prefer for people to see you in the best light? I think we all do. Of course we do. But, reality is often a little different, isn’t it?
And most of the time, I think that’s what we post online. We don’t post the messes, we crop them out or simply avoid even taking the picture. And it gives us a false sense of what others lives would be like. I read something last week that nearly bashed Instagram for that very reason- but it failed to recognize that some of us are at least posting snippets of reality there. Sure, it’s never the full picture- it would be impossible to post 24X7 and live life. . . and I think when you have a camera on you that much, it’s going to change things. I digress. But, I’m sure that was just one of the stories that helped me think about it all yesterday. I also saw an interview with Brian Fallon who was talking about how artists are people with the similar struggles etc as we all have- they have good days and bad days, etc. I read this article from Ali Edwards about our stories.
It’s easy to consider what we see online as hypocrites, frauds, quacks online- or the even worse alternative, try to live put to the impossible standards we see online. I think that the world online is as easy a target as we often think of those medical folks or politicians.
But, what if you really get even more introspective. What you to pretend to be? What are you trying to be that you are not? We won’t talk about how often I’ve answered a simple greeting asking me how things were and lied- at least in some part- just to avoid the truth. I don’t know about y’all, but Sunday I got to thinking about how often I don’t even tell myself the truth.
See. Now it’s easy to say that doctor didn’t know what he was doing. It’s easy to point the finger at a politician (and assume we’d be able to navigate all those waters and that we have all the answers to problems that loom so very large with so many factors). Of course it is, but I don’t really want to think of myself as Quack. Do you? But the truth is, I can’t avoid it.
But, as part of our sinful nature, we’re wired that way. Thank goodness The Truth gives us grace. That we don’t have to save ourselves- nothing we can do will save us. Only His grace. Thank goodness we are saved by faith and not works.