FROM Kyle Idleman
IN CHRISTIANITY TODAY, MARCH 2017
We are learning to be more intentional with vulnerability. For a long time,
the church leadership world emphasized authenticity, which is good, but
vulnerability takes that a little bit further. The power of God's grace can
be unlocked through our vulnerable moments, when we're willing to talk about
our struggles, doubts, challenges, and fears. That's part of what Paul is
talking about in 2 Corinthians: when he is weak, God's grace is shown to be
powerful. So vulnerability is a core value that we intentionally celebrate.
How does vulnerability differ from authenticity?
Two years ago, I had an opportunity to preach about a struggle I'd been
having. At the time, I was emotionally spent. I was on edge. During an
argument with my wife, I lost my temper and punched a hole in the door of
her closet. We covered it with a mirror, and I forgot about it. Sometime
later, the mirror fell and shattered, uncovering this hole I'd tried to
cover up. When I got up to preach that weekend, I told that story. After the
sermon, I had a line of people ready to tell me stories of the holes in
their doors and walls.
Vulnerability is being honest about our struggles. It's more specific than
authenticity. You can be authentic without being vulnerable. Authenticity is
no longer pretending, but vulnerability is revealing.