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I Just Need to Know You’re Real
“I just need to know you’re real.”
That’s what I told God last week in a raw and honest conversation with Him and my anxiety. In between my pillow tears, and quickly changing emotions, I felt confused and lost. Here I was, a strong Christian, struggling with anxious thoughts and depressed moods, yet again.
But trying to be strong on my own doesn’t mean I won’t struggle in this life; trying to be strong on my own leads me nowhere.
In 2 Corinthians 12:10 of the New International Version, the Bible notes, “For when I am weak, then I am strong. I have made a fool of myself, but you drove me to it. I ought to have been commended by you, for I am not in the least inferior to the “super-apostles,” even though I am nothing” (2 Corinthians 12:10, New International Version).
Strength or Pride?
In our day-to-day lives, I think we take pride in being or trying to be “the strong one.” We wear our power and ability to hold ourselves well as armor, but when we begin to falter, we feel weak and less than human with crumbling ammunition.
Yet the relationships that thrive the best are those built during weakness rather than strength. It is in the moments of authentic, raw, and unfiltered conversations that burdens are shared, and joy resounds. And why? Because there is healing in being real.
If we are honest, we all just want someone real we can relate to.
Talk about life with.
The messy, broken pieces of hard times, pop star scandals, and struggles.
In romantic relationships, we feel the closest to our significant others when we are honest and vulnerable with them.
In familial clans, we feel the most secure with those we love when we tell them what is on our minds.
Don’t you think God desires to hear the same from us?
He Wants Our Heart
In 1 Samuel 15:22 of the King James Version, we are reminded that just as God did not want sacrifices from bulls and goats from Samuel, but his heart, He desires the same from us today: “And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams” (1 Samuel 15:22, King James Version).
In Hosea 6:6 of the New Living Translation, the Prophet Hosea reminds us of a similar message: “I want you to show love, not offer sacrifices. I want you to know me more than I want burnt offerings” (Hosea 6:6, New Living Translation). For even when God’s people turned their backs on Him again and again, it was his love, grace, and mercy that persuaded Him to save us. And that same love, grace, and mercy were so powerful, they even convinced Hosea to take a prostitute as his wife even when she left him.
Both illustrations only further explain this unfathomable love the Father has for us. Because He never wanted anything from us that He didn’t already give us and create inside our beating souls: our heart.
Even when the Law was necessary for the people of Israel, its purpose was to point us to the coming of Christ. He laid down His life, His body, and His heart because He wanted ours.
Romans 3:19-20 of the New International Version explains this well: “Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin” (Romans 3:19-20, New International Version).
Just as the purpose of the Law was to point us to Jesus and His heart, He desires for each of us to show Him the heart He created within us today.
“You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise” (Psalm 51:16-17, New International Version).
Our Hearts Are What He Desires
Sun or rain, moon or stars, graves or gardens, our voices pouring out who we are, as we are before a Holy God are what He desires most.
“For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said, “Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body have you prepared for me; in burnt offerings and sin offerings you have taken no pleasure. Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come to do your will, O God, as it is written of me in the scroll of the book.’ ” When he said above, “You have neither desired nor taken pleasure in sacrifices and offerings and burnt offerings and sin offerings” (these are offered according to the law), then he added, “Behold, I have come to do your will.” He does away with the first in order to establish the second. And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all” (Hebrews 10:4-10, English Standard Version).
He just wants to hear what’s on your heart.
He just wants to hear what’s real.
He just wants to hear from you.
Are You Real With Me?
When I told God, “I just need to know you’re real,” maybe He said the same to me: “I just need to know you’re real.”
Real when you talk to me crying.
Real when you talk to me rejoicing.
Real when you lay down the burdens of your heart.
Real when you carry them and realize you were never meant to.
In Malachi chapter 3, God tells Israel to put Him to the test with their tithing. He promises that by putting Him first, they will receive blessings upon blessings from Heaven, too numerous to count.
“The Lord All-Powerful says, “Try this test. Bring one-tenth of your things to me. Put them in the treasury. Bring food to my house. Test me! If you do these things, I will surely bless you. Good things will come to you like rain falling from the sky. You will have more than enough of everything. I will not let pests destroy your crops. All your grapevines will produce grapes.” This is what the Lord All-Powerful said” (Malachi 3:10-11, Easy Read Version).
Today, God wants us to commit to the real test by not only putting Him first in our hearts but showing Him we are real. And while He does desire for us to tithe and give, I also believe He desires for us to give Him an even greater gift: ourselves.
The Creator longs for His creation to come to Him, and He longs for us to do so in a very real, and intimate way.
Real in our relationship with Him.
Real in our actions with others.
Real when we feel like we can’t take another step.
Real with our doubts, anxieties, and chaos.
Real, even when we’re telling Him, “God, I just need to know you’re real.”
How can you be real with God today?