I recently spoke at a women’s event. I invited a good friend whom I met when I led a group of women on a journey through Israel. It’s risky to invite a friend when I don’t know a lot about the event or venue. But since a mutual friend invited me to speak, and the friend I invited lived fairly close to the venue, I took it as a chance to spend some time together. So, we made plans to meet at the event, then hang out for a while afterward.
I gave my friend a quiet warning when she arrived: after looking at the agenda, I knew there was an icebreaker involved. Most interactive activities don’t bother me much, but I’ve watched too many uncomfortable moments among people when groups are told they’re about to do an icebreaker together, so I wanted to warn my friend just in case.
As it turned out, we didn’t have to get out of our seats. The hostess read a poem, which instructed us to add or subtract points based on a variety of criteria, and each of us kept a record of points until the end. Just as I’m sensitive to people who might be uncomfortable with icebreakers, I also know some people feel pressured with competition. To keep the mood light, as we were given instructions on assigning ourselves points, I leaned over to my friend and quietly asked, “Can we cheat?” To which I heard the immediate answer of “No!” But it wasn’t my friend who answered me; it was the event organizer.
After the icebreaker (which had some humorous moments), the event organizer walked to the podium for the next part of the program…and she tattled on me.
It’s okay. I have thick skin; plus, she was only speaking the truth of what she heard me say. The funny part was my blog post that published that morning was Tattle on Yourself. Apparently, the theme of the day was tattling.
Oh, how I love God’s sense of humor and creative reminders (most of the time). My post was less about tattling in terms of digging up dirt and exposing others and simply admitting the truth of ourselves.
Tattling can certainly have the wrong motives, but when we’re a bit more light-hearted about it, we can approach it as a way to reveal truth. And that’s what I want. I want to be authentic in every corner of my life. I want to be authentic in the wide open spaces. I want to be authentic in private and public. And authenticity can never be separated from truth – not my version of truth that makes me most comfortable but bright-light truth that reveals imperfections and avenues of growth.
I pretty much tattle on myself all the time by sharing my life through this blog. It’s a bit of a daunting experience at times, but it keeps me in check. Writing publicly invites accountability. For some, sharing online invites using filters to hide flaws. I (and many others) approach it with a different set of filters. Filters that set aside the junk and get to the core truth of what’s going on. So, you read about my struggles, misconceptions, mistakes, and more. But you hopefully also see my growth and pursuit of purpose through it all.
If you don’t, perhaps you need to tattle. 🙂