"I remember sitting in chapels, vespers, church, or other worship settings while in high school and middle school, and hearing my friends call the people up front for being fake. 'That girl parties all summer long and cusses like a sailor and she's gonna get up front and pray like Ellen White?' 'I can't believe he's up there talking to us about how to be more like Jesus' or 'why does the way he talks change when he's talking to God? That's so fake.'
Growing up a pastor's kid I became hyper aware of how those who are up front, leaders in spiritual settings, are perceived both up front and in their daily interactions. As I found myself being more and more involved in worship and speaking up front, I found myself constantly checking to see if I was speaking differently up front than I would in private.
This has turned into one of my greatest fears as well as one of my greatest motivators for what I want to accomplish in life. I'm terrified that who I am when no one is around might be different than who I am when I'm up front while professing my love for Jesus. I'm even more terrified that those differences might be found out and highlighted, undermining my influence for God. That fear has made me so much more passionate about trying to influence the SDA church and make it authentic, real, relatable, transparent, and inviting through a real, personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
The word Christian is used so loosely when it is such a big claim. We Christians are claiming to be 'followers of Christ' and too often I've seen that play out as 'people who say the Bible and Jesus are real, but in every other way are no different from every good Buddhist, Muslim, Catholic, or atheist in the world.' I'm on a mission to be a true follower of Christ, and if I am ever perceived to be faking it then everything I've done up to that point in representing Jesus' love to the world is moot.
That's what I'm terrified of as a Christian. I'm terrified that if I pretend to be something I'm not while representing Jesus, I'll be found out- undoing every single good thing Jesus has done through me.
Honestly though, as long as it doesn't hold me back I think it's a healthy fear. It keeps me aware of my imperfections while reliant on Jesus for transformation and salvation, which is exactly where I want to be."