Growing up, I dabbled in acting a little. I had some roles in church productions and high school musicals. I had fun being in shows but, honestly, preparing my part was not my favorite. Memorizing and running lines was really taxing. It’s also a crazy task to truly get in character and embody the persona of someone else. I always enjoyed a performance. It was always great when everything came together. I also remember being totally exhausted when shows were over.

In real life, authenticity is something I hold in high regard. I get frustrated when someone acts differently depending on who they are around. It is exhausting to be anyone other than myself. Say what you mean. Mean what you say. Be who you are. After loving God and loving others, I think being genuine is what I hope for, live for, and long to experience with others.

One of my favorite worship songs over the years is Heart of Worship:

When the music fades
All is stripped away
And I simply come
Longing just to bring
Something that’s of worth
That will bless Your heart

I’ll bring You more than a song
For a song in itself
Is not what You have required
You search much deeper within
Through the way things appear
You’re looking into my heart

Heart of Worship by Matt Redman

I think I love this song because it is what I truly long for. To live out being a blessing to God, to worship God with who I am, with my life. God is God. He doesn’t need my worship, but because I am his child, I want to worship him. I want God near. He created me. He loves me. He knows me. I can’t hide from Him. I can’t pretend with him. He sees to the very heart of me always. Even when I disappoint him or run away from his best for me, he never leaves. This is the place that I am home. In Christ and Christ only, I am all he says I am. There are many times that I get distracted by this place, but when I put God first, when I seek him, everything is clear, and worship becomes my life’s calling, which I pursue with every breath and every step.

But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.
— John 4:23–24 ESV

The God who made the world and everything in it, this Master of sky and land, doesn’t live in custom-made shrines or need the human race to run errands for him, as if he couldn’t take care of himself. He makes the creatures; the creatures don’t make him. Starting from scratch, he made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find him. He doesn’t play hide-and-seek with us. He’s not remote; he’s near. We live and move in him, can’t get away from him!
— Acts 17:24 – 27 MSG