A ritual on Monday mornings is that I watch the sermon (and often the entire worship service) of the previous Sunday. Our Tech Team does an amazing job. Not that this Wismer needs external validation, but they make us both look good.  (By the way all those words I mispronounce are not accidental. It’s a strategy to keep your attention.) The scribes in the story told in Mark 12:38-40 lingered longer than expected.  Something was unsettling and I started pondering the definition of authentic. (I have issues, I know.)  Merriam-Webster defines authentic as 1: “real or genuine: not copied or false 2: true and accurate 3: made to be or look just like an original.” In my quiet time I realized an ideology of being true to the self—whoever you are or want to be… could be good or bad, moral or immoral. I started thinking, one could be authentically hypocritical or authentically deceptive or authentically dismissive… or just plain authentically mean, rude or even evil? These scribes are authentically wrong. Just because I understand and use the word authentic in a more positive manner doesn’t make it necessarily true.  It’s been said “authenticity means erasing the gap between what you firmly believe inside and what you reveal to the outside world.” Describing someone or even yourself as being ‘authentic’, however, does not automatically entail ascribing value to the description. Just because you are described as authentic does not necessary mean you are good, have worthy intentions or you’re morally responsible.  It seems to me that the attitudes and behaviors of these scribes may indeed be authentic to what they believe really matters but what really matters to them is not authentic to living more Christ-like.

Scripture Reading: Isaiah 32:8
“But those who are noble plan noble things, and by noble things they stand.”

Reflection Questions:
How do you define authentic?
How are you authentically living more Christ-like?
What noble things are in your plans?

Prayer: Holy God, as I make my way today, keep my heart filled with assurance that you are near and encourage me to live authentically in the best ways that share your goodness with others. Amen.