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Eyeliner Deep

I have spent my summer searching for the perfect eyeliner only to discover that the eyeliner industry is ripping me off. I want eyeliner that will last for several months, but I have been through four in two short months! And I don’t even wear make-up every day in the summer. The eyeliners I have chosen no longer twist up to give you more use. Through the package it appears there is a piece at the bottom that twists to reveal more of the stick, but it is false. What you see is what you get.

But I know there is more of the product that is down in the pencil, I just can’t get to it. I have run into this same thing in relationships, and I am sure you have too. With some people, there doesn’t seem to be much depth; I have a hard time getting past the superficial stuff and sometimes begin to think “what you see is what you get”. But that is rarely the case. There is always more to a person than what they are initially willing to expose.

While some seem to be an open book, others hide what they fear may push people away. If they can just keep the relationship superficial then there is less of a chance they will get hurt. It’s a defense mechanism that may protect people from getting hurt again, but it also never allows for true intimacy. Vulnerability is the key to any real, intimate and lasting relationship. But vulnerability equals risk: risk of exposing our faults, risk of getting hurt and risk of losing someone we like.

The woman at the well in John 4 has tried being vulnerable and it has gotten her hurt to the point of alienation. She is alone in the heat of the day at a well when she encounters Jesus. She has been hurt by men before and so when Jesus asks for a drink of water, she automatically throws up her defenses. “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” She assumes, like other men, he intends to hurt her in some way.

But Jesus wants to offer her eternal, living water to drink. The woman is skeptical, after all, Jesus doesn’t even have a bucket with him. It isn’t until Jesus goes deeper and tells the woman, “I know you have had five husbands and the man you are with now is not your husband.” Jesus knows her. He has made her vulnerable in this encounter. He has exposed her because he has the answer to the hurt she has experienced.

He changed the entire course of this woman’s life with one encounter. The woman at the well went from being estranged from the community to an evangelist. She ran toward the people she was ostracized by to share the Gospel of  Christ with them!! It’s utterly amazing! With Jesus, it only took one encounter. It may take longer with you and I, but there must be an encounter. We must be willing to stick around and get to know people beyond what they are initially willing to share.

The Christian must be able to perceive that there is more than meets the eye. Often people who appear superficial are just afraid to become vulnerable. The only thing that can change that is time. We must become vulnerable first, sharing in our weaknesses and sharing how God has helped us through those weaknesses. We are first vulnerable in our relationship with Christ. He knows us inside and out anyway so willingly bare everything to Him. Then, we display that vulnerability to others. Christians are not meant to come across as superheroes. But we are meant to point people to the One that does have super powers.

Nadolyn has served in the local church for over thirty years. Creator of DIRT ROAD BELIEVER YouTube, Nadolyn delights in sharing her faith, family and community to help believers slow down and deepen their relationship with Christ.

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