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Don’t Fake It Till You Make It!

The first time I remember hearing the phrase, “Fake it till you make it,” was at a MLM meeting over 35 years ago. The ‘preacher’ was on the stage doing a good job of working the crowd. People were on their feet shouting and clapping. Many of the people were already following the guy’s advice, at least the first part.

Over the following years, I heard this phrase many times in the corporate world. Sales managers would rant and rave at the staff to do more, sell more and if you have to, just fake it. During my stint in management, I was subjected to the VP of sales saying the same thing to the managers hoping the managers would say the same thing to the field force. There was at least one manager who didn’t.

I have also heard this phrase in church settings, although thankfully, not as often. Faking it till you make it is a corporate concept, not something taught in Scripture. To verify this I used a software program called WORDsearch 12. I typed in the search bar, “Fake it till you make it.” Guess what? There are zero times this phrase is used in Scripture in any version. So I lowered the bar and typed in “Fake it.” Same result. Wow!

Nowhere in the Old Testament are the Israelites instructed to be fake. In fact, problems came when they were fake trying to be people they weren’t.

In the New Testament Jesus never said the fake would be blessed or that they would make it. He seemed to frown on this behavior. None of the writers included instructions to fake it till you make it. We do find Peter and Paul having some not so complimentary things to say about fake people though.

Please don’t misunderstand. There are times we do things we don’t feel like doing for a good reason. That is not being fake. That is being real. Being fake is wanting to portray a perpetual image that is not real.

There are many that live with a mask on. They portray something they are not. Others admire what they see. However, nobody can wear a mask forever. At some point it comes off. That generally is in the home.

God designed us to be the person He wanted us to be. He gave each of us strengths and as a result we have corresponding weaknesses. Not too many people like their weaknesses. That is one of the many benefits of having God’s Spirit residing within us. Without weaknesses we would get to the place where we believe we do not need God, which we do.

When we attempt to become someone different from whom He created, great stress in our life is the result. We are not the only ones to benefit from this stress however. Those that live with us, work with us, live around us, etc., benefit as well.

If you are responsible for others, please don’t force them to become someone they are not. Doing so will be detrimental across the board. Rather, figure out who they are first, then guide them to areas they will excel in.

A couple came to me sometime back distraught over some of the things taking place in the lives of their children. One had major issues at school and elsewhere. The parents couldn’t figure it out. Someone referred them to me and so we began a journey.

It didn’t take long to determine the parents (as loving as they were) were loving their children into a mold that replicated the parents themselves. This created a lot of unnecessary frustration, stress and other stuff (not a clinical term). After teaching each family member about himself and herself, I suggested the parents allow the children to flourish in ways God designed them to.

The results were quick to follow. The stress levels came down for everybody. The children excelled at school and home. They all like me to this day. Awesome!

Fight capitulating to the pressures of others to be fake. Refuse to fake it till you make it. David recorded in Psalm 51:6 that God desires truth on the inward parts. Learn to be honest with yourself and others.

Don’t fake it in life, in relationships, in church or at home. Be the real individual God created you to be.

Be real! You will be happier and so will those around you.

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2 Comments

  1. Marthalee Lyman on September 1, 2018 at 12:06 pm

    Always well written and thought provoking. Thank you!!



  2. Wendy Erickson on September 10, 2018 at 9:02 am

    In the days that ‘Fake Book’ has such a powerful influence on people, your message of being REAL is refreshing and encouraging! We absolutely need to be reminded that Jesus wants us to think/focus on the things that are ‘true, honest, just of good report’ etc. (Phil 4:8). I always appreciate your wise, godly perspective!

    God bless