Don’t Just Fake It

Trials have a way of refining us, but in hard times we often want to push forward and just "fake it". These seasons of challenge are an opportunity to let the refining process work through dark parts of us that are bubbling to the surface!

Have you ever had to fake something?  I felt that way months into my first “real” job.  No amount of case studies or tests could have prepared me for the real person in the hospital bed before me.  The amount of uncertainty and fear I felt was not something we had “practiced” in any of my many classes over the years.  I was not prepared.  

I did the only thing I knew to do.  I hid behind a full smile and my shiny new name badge hoping against all odds that my insecurities were not seeping through.  My new mantra was “Fake it until you make it.” 

Fast forward a few decades and I find myself experiencing many of the same emotions as this unknown season of life has been unfolding over the past few months. I feel like I wake up daily to face something, whether small or large, that I have not been trained to deal with. As a result, I find myself defaulting to what I have always done – fake it in hopes that I make it but inside, my heart is racing.

I’ve had to become a full-time teacher to multiple kids in multiple grade levels at once.

I recently dusted off our sharpest pair of scissors and thanked the Lord for YouTube as I cut my family’s hair.    

Although I enjoy cooking, becoming a personal chef who is on call 24-7, 7 days a week is not my idea of fun.

I don’t feel like myself in this season, yet, at the same time,  I’m the rawest version of myself I have ever been.  I’m not just referring to my stretchy pants and unwashed hair either!  

1 Peter 1:6-7 says “In this you greatly rejoice, though now, for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.  These have come so that your faith- of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire- may be proved genuine and may result in praise glory and honor when Christ Jesus is revealed.”  

Trials bring fire…. A fire in your soul, a fire in your day to day, and sometimes, even fire on your stovetop if the whole personal chef thing isn’t turning out to be your strength.  

Fire also refines metal or gold as it is heated.  The fire intensifies, making the good better and the bad bubble it’s way up to the surface.  As difficult as this trial is, I’m sure we can all identify with some of the “good” that has come out of it.  Some of these unplanned sweet moments will become memories that will be talked about for years to come.

Along with the good that can come out of the refining process, the bad parts bubble it’s way to the surface as well.  When it comes to our lives what has appeared on the surface of your soul and what have you chosen to do with it? Do you see it as an opportunity or an annoyance?  

If you are like me, it’s tempting to simply push it back down and continue to wing it.   What if this season of life is a unique opportunity to work through some of the “yuck” that is in us?

Maybe the trials that we are all facing in this unprecedented time is a gift in a kingdom sort of way.   If we chose to allow God to deal with the dark things that are bubbling to the surface of our souls, refining work can be done in our lives.  Don’t fake it or dismiss the work that can be done in the fire.  Instead, may the fire be a defining moment in your relationship with the Lord.

-Nicki Behnke  (More of Nicki’s writings can be found at reallifeinreverse.blogspot.com)

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