After moving to a new house with an excellent place to ride bikes, skateboards, and scooters, my oldest bought himself a pair of rollerblades. The Amazon package arrived while my husband and I were out on a date-day. We knew it was coming so I was not totally surprised when I got a text from my mother-in-law of the first time my son put on those rollerblades.
He walked through the grass and onto to the pavement… and immediately fell on his face.
When I got home that evening, my son said, “Hey mom can you help me learn to rollerblade?”
The next morning (as soon as breakfast was over), we were out in the cul-de-sac. I help him up and gave him some pointers on how to move his feet. Dad came out gave some tips on how to glide. Before long, he was able to stay up on his own. Within a couple of days, he was able to rollerblade.
However, he made several remarks about thinking it was going to be easy and it’s not.
I told my son he should have seen me learning to rollerblade or ice skate, I fell so many times I’m sure I bruised my tailbone. It was like a weight was lifted off his shoulders.
You mean everyone struggles at first. I’m not alone.
Watching other people rollerblade looks easy.
But actually, putting on the skates, hitting the pavement, falling, getting back up, and trying again… well it hurts… physically… but it also hurts your pride.
Having to learn something new does not always come easy.
It takes time and patience.
It takes asking for help.
It takes persistence.
This is such a perfect picture of learning to walk with God. Everything we thought we knew about Christianity was through watching others. And in America, that means watching their highlight reel because being authentic is not something we do naturally. We put our best foot forward and pretend to have it all together. But guys, those people watching you need to see the real, raw, honest moments of learning. Because we all struggle. We all need help. However, in a world of put your best selfie on social media and count likes, we often neglect to do that.
Being authentic makes the Gospel authentic.
Jesus didn’t come to teach and serve only those who looked good on the outside.
Jesus didn’t only eat with people who made Him look good.
If He had social media, I wonder if he would have even posted a picture of Himself…
He came for those who needed a heart transformation. Because once the heart was transformed, everything the person did would be an overflow of love for the Lord.
If you want people to come to Christ, you must show them the difference Christ has made in your life. That means being willing to share your scars. Because those scars show where you were and where you are now. Those scars represent a changed life and the power of the Holy Sprit in your life. While it is not appropriate to walk up to everyone you know and tell them all your scars, those testimonies do have a time and place to be shared. Believe it or not, most people can relate to rejection, disappointment, sadness, probably more easily as they can relate to your happiness and joy. However, if you are not willing to share those scars, people will not seek you in times of struggle.
We have to let people know they are not alone.
We need each other.
We need to be willing to share things not on our highlight reel so that people know, we all struggle.
We all fall short.
We all need God.
And all we have to do is ask. He is right there. He is always with us. But sometimes we need someone to point us there and let us know it is ok to need help. It’s ok to make slow progress. It’s ok to keep trying… and it’s ok to fall too. The important thing is we give all we can and let God do the rest.
“Therefore, do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God (2 Timothy 1:8).”