BORN THIS WAY

We’re four years apart; we both come from Latin backgrounds full of faith; we each have more than three names; we cling tight to our beliefs and stand for what we believe in. Sure, I guess you could say thatStefani Joanne AngelinaGermanotta and I have a few things in common.Wardrobe preferences, income, make-up prep time, stage presence, and talents are a few not-so-slight differences that don’t exactly make us twins.  However, despite the obvious fact that I am no Lady Gaga; an even more drastic factor makes us moredifferent than black and white.We were both born flawed, fickle, imperfect, unfaithful, confusing, sinful, and ultimately—human.  With habits that should probably be broken, tendencies that are anything but pretty and sins that would’ve been better left uncommitted; yes, we were both born this way.  The difference is that I know I’m not meant to live this way.  I recognize that I was not destined for a lifetime of failure and sin. 

Just. Being. Real.  I believe this is where the church has miserably failed. In our attempt to radically change the world—we’ve failed to let them in on the process. The struggle.  The failures.  The realness of how encouraging hearing Proverbs 24:16: “Though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again” really is.  Paul had no shame in admitting his humanity;  “…I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.  For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing.”  (Romans 7:18b,19)

So, let me pause and take a moment to side with Gaga and say, you are right.  You are right in that you should come clean and blurt out your failures, share your struggles, and rip off your masks. Solely so that together, we can find support systems, gain traction, learn from our mistakes, throw off our burdens, and move on.  There’s something magnetic about someone with enough confidence to admit their flaws and shortcomings.

However, in contrast to this, we live in a society that has pushed “flaunt your flaws” a little too far.  While I applaud confessing one’s sins—parading them around has quite the opposite affect.  They’ve fully embraced part 1 of a two step process.  Videos, lyrics, photos, books; everything seems to be headed in the same direction.  Society has attempted to function in its dysfunction by claiming struggles to be lifestyle choices. “We were born this way, made this way, expected to live this way.”

This kind of mindset forces you to take the easy way out in life—day in and day out.  Never really reaching your full potential—falling short of who you were created to be.  Putting on a show and encouraging others to do the same, because at the end of the day, ultimately, you know you’re living your second-best life.

Excusing your mistakes, twisting truth into error, and dubbing sin as acceptable is not brave; it’s living in denial. And last I checked— denial is failing to face your fears.  Our fear of failure has encouraged us to re-name failure as success.  While embracing destruction as a trend, I believe nothing breaks God’s heart more than seeing his children living a life in extreme chaos, confusion, and sin.

Maybe you have a tendency to make mistakes, choose wrong—or even pick Judas.  To this I say, so what!  The good news is that Jesus Christ died so you wouldn’t have to embrace it as a lifestyle. Why throw a party in the ditch when you can get out of it.  There is freedom from sin and all of its drama.

So yes, we were all born this way, each the same way—sinful; but that doesn’t mean we have to live that way.  I encourage you; be brave; face your fears and cling to Christ who will always overcome your failures.

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death… If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:1-2, 31 

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