Open. Honest, objective, transparent.
We’re pondering ways to live fully alive. I shared four ways at our recent BYOB and B event, and I’m sharing them here individually. The first one was two days ago: live authentic. Today we’re exploring the second way: live open.
My daughter used to listen to music by the Cheetah Girls. Remember them? One of the group’s members, Adrienne Bailon, once said this:
“I think I’m a pretty open book. We’re all a work in progress, and I’m not ashamed to say that I don’t have it all together – I don’t really think anyone does.”Adrienne Bailon
Adrienne was right. No one has it all together. No one.
What if we chose to live open?
Because we don’t, what if you and I chose to live like an open book? Not a book where the intimate details of our lives are on display, no, but where others could see the real us. Where the pages of our days would be open and others near us might be encouraged and feel at home with us. Maybe where others could see we aren’t perfect and that we have stuff we’re dealing with too.
We’re in this life together. A connection is made and a bond is formed when we allow others in. Isn’t it true, when someone lets you in her life and shares certain details with you, don’t you feel connected and closer to her?
Yes, living fully alive happens when live open. And, yet, that might look different for each of us.
Open to God’s plan for our lives.
Open for God to work in a way in us we didn’t expect.
Open for God’s goodness to show up in His timing, not ours.
Open to allow God to work in the lives of those we love and pray for.
Open to give of ourselves.
Open to allow God’s cleansing and transforming power.
The story of Mary in the Bible is a perfect example of a woman willing to live open… and living a life that was fully alive. Mary was open to God’s plans for her life. When the angel, Gabriel, came and told her May was going to have a son and name him Jesus, what was her response? “I am the Lord’s servant. May your word to me be fulfilled.” Wow.
Being open is also being honest.
Honest with God, honest with others, honest with ourselves. Mom knew what she was talking about when she said, “Honesty is the best policy.” Living an honest life is necessary to live fully alive.
“Fake news” is a term thrown around a lot these days. It carries fabricated stories or false information shared in news outlets. A question to ask ourselves in the desire to live fully alive is, “Does fake news ever originate with me?”
In the movie that was made in my hometown, The Final Season, Coach Van Scoyoc (who was my neighbor growing up), played by Powers Booth, said it this way, “If you tell the truth, you never have to remember what you said.”
Being honest is freeing. When we’re honest with our words you and I won’t have to remember if what we said was true, we’ll know it was. When we’re honest with our actions, we’ll never have to second-guess our motives.
It is better to be poor and to live without blame than to be foolish and to twist words around.Proverbs 19:1 NIRV
Let’s take this home. How can you and I live open today? Open to ourselves? To others? To God? It may not come easy and it may take effort. But, as we choose to live open, we choose to live fully alive. Let’s pray for God to help us in doing so.
Stop back tomorrow. We’ll talk about the third way to live fully alive: live fearless.
Check out my previous post on this subject here.
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I think I have always shown my vulnerable side. It started as a defense mechanism. I thought if I can joke about my own shortcomings, it’s better than having someone else ridicule me about them. Probably not the healthiest thought process! As my blog has developed, I find myself writing about my challenges, weaknesses, lessons I’m learning in my walk with Christ. My poor mom asked me if I couldn’t be just a little more positive about myself and suggested counseling! Said out of love for sure but I was able to tell her that I often get messages that those words were what someone else needed. That’s why I think what you’ve said here is so important, Julie! Others (including me) need the reassurance that we’re not alone in our struggles. Thank you for always being a person willing to be open with your readers!!!
Cindy, there’s such truth and freedom in coming to terms with the reality we’re not alone in our struggles! I appreciate your writing, and bless your mother’s heart for trying to encourage and protect you! So kind. I’m glad we can be vulnerable and open. I believe that’s how God wants us to be. Thank you for always being a friend who appreciates the openness! Bless you, Cindy! <3