Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Real Virtue?

Realness. The virtue of choice for me and most people my age. But is realness really so virtuous? I am beginning to wonder. It is definitely more virtuous than its obvious opposite, phoniness. Originally, I think it was a reaction against phoniness that brought "realness" its current prominence. I am coming to believe that it is something else that has allowed this quality to remain so popular and esteemed. It makes a perfect mask for sin. Think about it. I can behave in a lazy, unfriendly, foolish, inconsiderate, hurtful manner and if I pass it off as being "real" I am praised rather than criticized. How delightfully convenient. Not only that, but if I am really good at it I might even convince myself and then I get to be proud rather than ashamed of unseemly behavior. I am coming to realize that this is a major pitfall for me. It shows up most in my life through complaining. I would rather complain that put on one of those fake smiles I have been taught to despise. But are those my only two options? Must I choose between complaining and being fake? As a Christian I know the answer is certainly not. So that brings me to my New Year's Resolution of sorts. I aim to seek by the grace of God to stop complaining. I pray that He will help me to replace my complaints not with a skin deep, painted on smile, but with all the joy and gratefulness that befits one whom Christ has brought from death unto life.

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