We probably all have at least one acquaintance who makes us nuts with their social media posts because we know that their life is not as pleasant as Facebook would make it appear. According to Facebook, every social event they attend is wonderful and they had a great time and were appreciated by all.
This surreality is one of the reasons why I’ve removed the Facebook app from my phone and iPad. Well, the cute puppy and cat videos may also have had a little to do with it.
But if we’re honest (as the title of this blog seems to indicate we ought to be), we must admit our own tendency to display ourselves as better than we are. We may do it less blatantly but we all do it.
I’m not trying to say that the Facebook deception should be considered normal or acceptable. My point is that, for Christians, every form of deception should be avoided.
Boasting is never a good idea for Christians unless we want to boast in the extravagant grace and limitless love of God for his people. But boasting’s close cousin, false humility, can creep in and cause at least as much damage.
As Christians, we are called to speak the truth in love. We are called to confess our sins to each other. We are called to live lives of humble worship of our God.
But this takes wisdom. It would be very weird and probably unwise to start confessing our faults to a complete stranger.
My gut feel is that the less we say about ourselves the better.
Jesus addressed this issue when he cautions us about taking the coveted place at a banquet. We should, rather, take the lower place. If we are to be elevated, it is better that it be at the initiation of someone else (See Luke 14:7-11).
The question we need to ask ourselves is, “why do we feel the need to make people think we are better than we are?”
My opinion is that we feel this pressure because we have not let the gospel of Jesus Christ penetrate to the core of our being.
If we feel pressure to make ourselves look good, it is an indication that we are still holding on to some self righteousness that is odious to our God.