So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation—if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.
As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2.1-5
This world is full of hypocrisy. One of the results of sin in this world is shame; with shame comes the need to hide shame. Hiding shame and avoiding failure inevitably lead us into buying into systems and rules which allow us to avoid shame, but eventually show themselves to be false definitions of success. These false systems of value reveal to us that we have been hypocrites.
We all have to stand in front of the mirror and deal with the reality of our hypocrisy. What do we do with this? How do we respond? Too often we either blame or hide. We try to find the reason why we were duped (who tricked us) and/or we push everyone away thinking that we can keep ourselves safe in isolation. None of this deals with our hypocrisy, it simply avoids it.
Jesus gives us the means to embrace our hypocrisy; not in a good way, but in order to be healed. He takes our shame away. At the cross, all of our shame was placed on Him so that we could be freed from it. We can live a life of appreciation for what He has done; we can begin to live without shame. We do this by knowing the God who rescued us:
Relationship over Ritual | approach God as an adopted son or daughter. He did not just save us from shame, but also from being orphans. We are no longer on our own to prove ourselves, we are children with whom He is well pleased.
Worship over Worry | our lives are not about measuring up, but the process of transformation. Our sin and hypocrisy don’t drive us from God, but closer to Him as we see His love and mercy poured out on us.
Passion over Precision | we respond to His goodness by doing what pleases Him. As we are won over by the goodness of God, we begin to be like Him; we become ambassadors of His love, mercy, and joy. We are living stones being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
The gospel reveals to us that we are failures, but it also takes away the sting of shame. In this, we are freed to pursue God and to be His priesthood, revealing Him to the world, in ways we never thought possible. Embrace the de-systematized discomfort of relationship and find the peace you have been working for.