Saturday, July 19, 2014

Values: Raw Authenticity

Several months ago, I posted part one on my values. The first value I detailed was Kingdom Family. If you missed it, you can read it here. I have delayed in blogging more about my values because I wanted to be sure that I actually am valuing what I say I value.

I finally decided today, after procrastinating on writing this one for months, I will take the brave step to share my second value. Knowing that, while I already live this one out day to day, once I state that it is a value of mine, I am accountable to it. (Scary at times, eh?!)

Raw Authenticity.

Merriam-Webster defines authentic as:

1. Obsolete

2. a. Worthy of acceptance or belief
b. Conforming to an original so as to reproduce essential features
c. Made or done the same way as an original

3. Not false or imitation: Real, Actual

4. True to one's own personality, spirit, or character
Synonym: Genuine

Webster also gives a synonym discussion of Authentic, and I really like what it says.
authentic, genuine, bona fide mean being actually and exactly what is claimed. authentic implies being fully trustworthy as according with fact ; it can also stress painstaking or faithful imitation of an original . genuine implies actual character not counterfeited, imitated, or adulterated ; it also connotes definite origin from a source . bona fide implies good faith and sincerity of intention .

That value, being authentic, in itself is a huge task that requires deep vulnerability and willingness to be transparent. But when you add raw in front of it, things get intense.

Good ol' Webster says this about raw:

a. Being in the natural state: Not processed or purified. Not diluted or blended.
b. unprepared or imperfectly prepared for use
c. Not being in polished, finished or processed form.
d. Having the surface abraded or chafed
e. lacking covering
f. not protected, susceptible to hurt
g. lacking experience or understanding

When I say that I value Raw Authenticity, I am saying that I value being unfinished, rough, unmasked in the realest real of my heart. To be raw means that you have no protective covering to hide flaws. Not trying to imitate what culture, the church, people tell you that you need to be.
In this state, I am very susceptible to being hurt.
Obviously, I am to use wisdom and not throw my pearls to the pigs, but if I am to walk out raw authenticity, it requires great risk.

Authenticity, rawness, realness, all require risk.

There is no one in the world who is like me. I am the only one who looks like me, thinks like me, processes like me, loves like me.

The Creator gifted me with something beautiful that he wants to share with the world. If I am not my truest, rawest, authentic self, I am causing others to miss out on a side of our very good Father. For me to hide from others is to do an injustice to not only them, but me too.
When I am my truest self, I am more alive.
When I let the walls down and allow myself to be vulnerable and raw, I receive a greater gift. I receive friends. I find that there are others who can relate. I find other real human beings.

The more you cook vegetables, the more nutrients (life) drain from them. The more raw, the more alive.

I want to be raw. I want to be full of life.

God is most glorified when man is fully alive. 

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