This beautiful word has been rolling around my tongue and heart for a few months now.
Sincerity: the quality of being severe, genuine, honest, free from duplicity. Being open and truthful, not deceitful or hypocritical. Having candor, good faith, wholeheartedness. Probity in intention and communication. Pure, unadulterated, blameless.
Such a lovely definition. Everything I would strive and desire to be.
But what does the application of such an ideal look like daily? What does being sincere look like in action?
Romans 12:9 immediately came to my mind. Beloved, familiar passage, freshly illuminated. “Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” Or as the MSG so honestly states it: “Love from the center of who you are; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle.”
“Love from the center of who you are.” That resonates deeply. Love from the core of your being, the wellspring of your life, you could say.
We’ve been commanded to guard our hearts, but what about the command to love sincerely, deeply, unabashedly, selflessly?
When do we break through our walls, not built by wisdom or caution, but built by the fear of rejection, and experience the freedom and bliss of vulnerability that comes with loving sincerely?
How many opportunities have we missed for the fear of rejection? Why do we cower at the thought of rejection and shrivel at embarrassment, when we serve a loving Savior who was rejected and mortified, all out of His sincere love for us?
Fear. It’s selfish, truly. Desiring to preserve oneself. Yet we allow it to drive our decisions and debilitate our dreams. Fear equates a lack of trust, worry, a lack of faith.
But even though we are hopelessly flawed, dreaming of the day of Completeness, we are given this beautiful promise in 1 John 4:18: “There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear.”
How beautifully ironic. The only way to cure the fear of loving sincerely, intimately, selflessly, is nothing but love itself, to hand your fear over to the Author and Perfecter of love.
So, my dear brothers and sisters, my challenge to you is this:
Be sincere, in every word, every action.
Be honest, truthful, trustworthy.
Be a man or woman of purity and integrity.
Be a brave, strong, fearless proclaimer of the love of Christ and the Truth of the gospel.
Don’t be afraid, for He is with you.
Put down roots. Commit to things and people. Be all in or not in at all.
Love with abandon or walk away, love is not something to do half heartedly.
Be pure in intentions, in relationships. Love the Body as He loves us.
Take chances, abandon fear.
Love from the center of who you are, and know who you are in Him; a conqueror, a co-heir, a lavishly loved child.
So what if you fall? Don’t you think the Author of love, with all kindness and sincerity, will set you upright again?