The Confidence of Authenticity
As Paul describes it in Romans 12:3 authenticity is not thinking of ourselves, “more highly than we ought”, but rather thinking of ourselves, “with sober judgement, in accordance with the faith God has distributed” to each of us.
Recently we’ve identified AUTHENTICITY as on one of the three core values of Momentum Europe (along with generosity and expectancy).
In 1982, in the midst of some rough times in ministry during our years in Nigeria, the idea of authenticity struck home in my life through Chuck Swindoll’s book, Improving your Serve. I’ll never forget one phrase that popped off the page in describing a true servant of Christ; “Nothing to Prove, Nothing to Lose.” I think that pretty well describes the heart of authenticity.
Today, in the most obvious way, we see many leaders – political and otherwise – going out of their way, trying to prove they are something they aren’t. They feel they have much to lose, and yet in their desire for worldly gain, they are losing what is most important, authenticity. We see showmanship and phoniness, where we need to see humility and leadership.
In the context of Momentum Europe we see that authenticity is not something we try to manufacture, but rather the product of the Holy Spirit at work in and through us. “Bearing fruit” as John says in 15:5 is result of abiding in Christ. It’s certainly not a result of good marketing or great strategy. It is true that we want to tell our story well and develop good strategies, but our confidence in the future rests not in man-made ability or process, but rather our confidence rests in being genuine and authentic before the Lord, and before one another.
Authenticity not only brings confidence rooted in the Lord, but also brings growth – both as individuals and in the overall impact of Momentum Europe. God hasn’t called us to be everything to everyone, but He has called us to help set the pace in reaching and engaging influential Europeans with the love of Christ. And, he has called us to playing a role in helping to ignite and resource spiritual awakening in Europe – which leads us to our value of EXPECTANCY, (but, that will have to wait for another article).
In the meantime, let’s draw confidence from being authentic in our walk with Jesus and in our calling to reach leaders. In a world riddled with phoniness and pretense, people will be drawn to Jesus as they experience the attractiveness of our authentic walk with Christ.