Genuine Original True Actual
Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.” — Oscar Wilde
What is AUTHENTICITY? Well, it’s the words listed above. Being authentic is being genuine. It is being original; God only created one you. Authentic is being trustworthy and actually who you say you are.
How do you tell the difference between being authentic and not? Really pretty easily if you’re paying attention. Being authentic is truly being real – I mean R.E.A. L. It is being all the things listed above and being inauthentic is being fake – just plain and simple.
How does it make you feel when someone is not authentic? Stop and think about that for a moment. We have all encountered someone who is genuine and someone who is not. When you spend time with someone who is authentic, it makes you feel good, it’s refreshing to be among people who are real and kind.
What characteristics do you look for in the people you spend time with? I look for friends who are truth tellers, have a positive outlook and are kind to others. People who are authentic are realistic, thoughtful, not afraid to express their emotions, have a sense of humor and accept themselves for who they are.
Where I work, we try our best to live by the statement, “Inspire people to take good care of each other.” Difficult to do without authenticity. We spent last year working with Brene Brown who encouraged us and motivated us to be more authentic in the workplace – to fully live where we are whether at home or at work.
“To be authentic, we must cultivate the courage to be imperfect — and vulnerable. We have to believe that we are fundamentally worthy of love and acceptance, just as we are. I’ve learned that there is no better way to invite more grace, gratitude and joy into our lives than by mindfully practicing authenticity.”— Brené Brown
The Bible has much to say about authenticity.
- Our lives should be God-centered and not Me-centered.
2 Corinthians 4:7-10: “Now we have this treasure in clay jars, so that this extraordinary power may be from God and not from us. We are afflicted in every way but not crushed; we are perplexed but not in despair; we are persecuted but not abandoned; we are struck down but not destroyed. We always carry the death of Jesus in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be displayed in our body.”
- We should live a life filled with humility and not pride. We are “transformed by the renewing of our mind” with Christ. People will be drawn to us not because of who we are but because Christ lives in us.
1 Corinthians 4:3-6, “It is of little importance to me that I should be judged by you or by any human court. In fact, I don’t even judge myself…It is the Lord who judges me…who will both bring to light what is hidden in darkness and reveal the intentions of the hearts. And then praise will come to each one from God…the purpose is that none of you will be arrogant, favoring one person over another.”
- We should live a life of sincerity. If people were asked to describe you, what would they say.
1 Timothy 1:5: “Now the goal of our instruction is love that comes from a pure heart, a good conscience, and a sincere faith.”
How do you feel when someone treats you badly? Don’t worry, that question is rhetorical! We all feel terrible when we are disrespected and not treated with kindness. Hopefully, this emotion stirs up a desire within us to act in the opposite way with kindness and love and not reciprocate hurtful actions.
Be kind to those around you. Watch how radically your life begins to change. For one thing, the simple act of being kind does boost your happiness — even if slightly. Ann Voskamp says, “Be the Gift.” Be the gift to others with your authenticity, your truthfulness and your kindness.
Being authentic and imperfect allows others to see an authentic life lived and watch Christ transform it. How could we do more to win others for Christ? Living an authentic life so that others can see Christ at work is the ultimate witness.