For those of us who struggle with hiding from our own neediness and darkness, former pastor Tullian Tchividjian profoundly explains why we have to be up-front with ourselves and others about our brokenness. His words resonated with me deeply in light of feelings I've had in the past, and I think that we can all relate these sentiments to our own lives in some way or another. Following a recent family tragedy, Tullian posted on Facebook:
"…One of the big questions I've wrestled with is, how do I properly steward this glorious ruin? To be quite honest, I want to crawl into a hole and be anonymous for a long, long time. I don't want a stage, a platform, a microphone, a spotlight. I want to disappear. Nothing seems more appealing to me on most days than to simply vanish. But here's my struggle…if I only let you see me when I'm 'good' and 'strong' and polished and 'at the top,' I undermine the very message that I claim to believe. I am tempted to hide until I'm 'shiny' again. But if I run away because I don't want you to see me broken and weak and sad and angry and struggling with fear and guilt and shame, then I fail to practice what I preach - and one of the many things I've learned is that failing to practice what you preach is destructive. The Gospel frees me to let you see me at my worst - the me that runs away, the me that doesn't want to pray, the me who gets angry at God, the me who rationalizes, the me that knows I'm solely to blame for my sinful choice but who wants to blame others. That's my shadow side. And it's dark. I knew it was bad, but I never knew I was this bad. So, if I refuse to give you a glimpse into my walk through the valley of the shadow of death, then you'll never see the grace that meets me every day at my absolute nastiest. Grace always flows to the lowest point, and while it scares me to death because I'm a lot more image conscious then I let on, I'm going to let you see me at the bottom - because that's where Jesus is."