When you feel like faking your shine

When you Feel like Faking Your Shine

Again this week, God’s idea for what I should share about shining is vastly different than my plan. Tuesday morning, I felt His Spirit convict me, “Liz, why are you faking your shine?


My footsteps were slow and heavy as I trudged up the stairs. The perfect storm of less than desirable events and a difficult discussion with someone I love had me feeling defeated and down. I stripped off my pajamas (by pajamas I mean yoga pants and a t-shirt) and tossed them high on the shelf in the closet, hoping I’d remember they were there that evening. I searched the rack of hanging tops for something bright and cheerful. I twisted my hair up on top of my head and selected some sparkly accessories. I covered my blemishes, powdered my nose, and added some rosy color to my cheeks.

Then with my lips parted as I leaned in close to the mirror about to drag the bristles of the wand through my left eye lashes, I realized what I was doing.

Faking My Shine

I felt like I had to fake my shine for the ladies in my Bible study. I thought I had to put on a good face to prove how good God is. I assumed I had to be on top of the world to show the world who the Boss is. I aimed to show them how blessed I am, so they would see how much God loves me. I wanted to polish my look so I might appear more shiny.

Faking Your Shine

But shining doesn’t mean we put on a happy face or hike up our big girl panties or pull ourselves up by our bootstraps and hide the hurts in our hearts.

Do we really think that having a bad day might make others question God’s goodness? Subconsciously we seem to assume shining is related to prosperity and success and answered prayers. Or is that just me? But my happiness isn’t what makes me shiny. Holiness is. That is why our hope is in heaven, not our happiness here.

My current afflictions do not negate His constant affection. None of my earthly troubles can separate me from God’s love for me in Christ. And that gives me a reason to shine for real.

“For I am convinced that night death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Romans 8:38-39

Share in His Suffering

Too often we are tempted to talk about how good God is without acknowledging how hard life can be. We can’t wait to tell the world how blessed we are when we get what we want or what we’ve prayed for. Because He blesses His people, right? That’s what He does? Gives us our every heart’s desire? It says to right in Psalm 37, doesn’t it?

So why do we constantly see His children endure such hardship? Parenting problems. Messes in marriage. Financial failings. Difficult diagnoses. Friendship flaws. Dashed dreams. Political Peril. Pain. Famine. Loss. Anxiety. Loneliness.

Jesus warned us there’d be trouble.

Then He endured suffering we can hardly imagine. He prayed for His Father to make another way, to let the cup of suffering and death and sacrifice pass from Him. After praying, He endured the shame of the cross for my sins. He suffered most right before His final glorification. Suffering didn’t keep Jesus from shining, so why do we feel like we have to hide the hard in our own lives? Why do we feel like we have to fake our shine?

If God promised we will share in His glory, how can we not also expect to share in His suffering?

Surrender in Suffering

The key to the way Jesus endured His suffering was complete surrender to God’s will in all circumstances. Jesus knew God wouldn’t allow Him to suffer unnecessarily. He trusted His Father’s will was better than what He wanted. Jesus knew there was a higher purpose for His pain. He knew the way to eternal glory was through the suffering that showed him to be completely holy. Jesus prayed that His Father’s will would be done despite His requests.

This is the crux of Psalm 37:4, too.

“Delight in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart.”

Psalm 37:4

Delight here is the Hebrew word ‘anag (Strongs H6026) and it can mean be soft or pliable. This makes me think of yielding, surrendering, submitting. When we yield or submit to the Father’s will, our wants become His.

We shine when we are more satisfied with God’s will than our wants. Even when that involves pain on our part.

We shine when we are more satisfied with God’s will than our wants. #shine Click To Tweet

The Problem with Faking Your Shine

Fake shine pretends everything is fine right now. Genuine shine comes from knowing God will make everything right in eternity. Glossing over our present problems doesn’t make us shine, but looking beyond our burdens to heaven’s blessings does. Even when temporarily distressed, we are no less eternally blessed.

Fake shine creates frail community. It perpetuates idea that God only gives good things to those who love Him enough or pray properly or have enough faith. If we only tell the world how good God is when we get what we want, what do we say when we don’t get the answers we hoped for, the job, the cure, the masterpiece marriage? How do we respond to those around us in their affliction? Especially as mothers, leaders, influencers, and mentors, if we fake our shine, we’ll teach others to do the same. We’ll show them their suffering makes them look less shiny.

But fake shine fades at the first sign of real life.

Instead we have to acknowledge that real life is hard and accept that God can use hardship to make us holy, like His Son (Romans 8:28).

But fake shine fades at the first sign of real life. #shine #dontfakeyourshine Click To Tweet

No Debbie Downers

Now, let’s not take this post as permission to become a bunch of Debbie Downers. We can’t shine if we go around griping and complaining all day. But rather let this be a call for us to let our humility, meekness, gentleness, peace, and stillness shine through an inner strength that bends to God’s will in our lives, 

despite the difficulties we face.

Much like gold plated jewelry turns your finger green after a few days, fake shine doesn’t hold up against the rigors of real life. Fake shine is cheap, but faith shine is priceless. Fake shine might make me feel good today, but faith shine is eternal. Fake shine comes from happiness, but faith shine comes from holiness. Faith shine is founded in His sovereignty not my circumstances, His faithfulness not my feelings, His holiness not my happiness, His eternal glory not earthly goodness, His salvation not my suffering, His will not my wants.

The next time you feel like faking your shine, remember:

  1. Current affliction does not negate God’s constant affection.
  2. Though temporarily distressed, we are no less eternally blessed.
  3. God never wastes any suffering, but uses it for good.
  4. Holiness shines brighter than happiness.
  5. Our light is fueled by faith, not feelings.
  6. Shine bright by surrendering to His will, not demanding your way.

I hope you’ll remind me, too!

Can you remember a time when you felt like faking it? What happened? Which of these reminders might help you most next time?

6 Ways to Find Genuine Shine When You Feel Like Faking it #shine Click To Tweet


Linking Up With

For more encouragement please join the discussions on these fabulous blog link ups – Suzanne EllerFaith On FireSusan B. MeadFaith Filled FridayGrace and TruthFaith and Fellowship FridaySoul SurvivalRah Rah Link UpTell His StorySitting Among FriendsTestimony TuesdayPlanting Roots, and Fresh Market FridaySalt and Light, and Becoming Press’s Writer Wednesday.


When you feel like faking your shine

33 thoughts on “When you Feel like Faking Your Shine

  1. This is beautiful, Liz. So honest and encouraging. And when people see us choosing joy in the midst of our struggles, they see the real secret to a life in Christ. Yes. Faith shine is the real deal!! xoxo

  2. No Debbie Downers,for sure, but sometimes, in order to be real, we just have to admit some things. One Sunday morning, I confessed to my ladies that I was just feeling grumpy and overwhelmed. There, I said it. And someone offered to pray for me right then and there. What a gift that was!

    1. Yup! We have to share that everything isn’t ok right now, but we have hope that it will be in heaven! What a lovely group you have to gather around and lift you up! Blessings, friend!

  3. Shine bright by surrendering to His will, not demanding your way; it just makes this whole thing easier! Thanks for these reminders, Liz. Blessings to you.

  4. Liz, this is such a beautiful post. It brings comfort to my heart as I think about our friend who has BEEN IN JAIL for 14 months. Basically because he is a Christian. No trial. No access to visitors. Nothing the US government can do is helping. I was blown away when his mom, who is in country to support his wife, said she is content for him to stay there until God’s purposes are completed.

    But this comforts me, friend: “Current affliction does not negate God’s constant affection.
    Though temporarily distressed, we are no less eternally blessed.”

    Love to you and yours.

  5. Yes you are right. That’s information must be know every one. I also share this post on my friend. Now The present world are human face many type problem. There have many solution but can not know the people. That was very educational post for me. Keep posting dear.

  6. This is SO spot on. For some reason, we feel that we need to be shiny Christians all the time— even when we would probably be way more encouraging in our authenticity! Keeping it real and pointing to Christ, shiny or whiny, God can use it all. Thanks so much for sharing 🙂 Stopping by from #TellHisStory

    1. Exactly! I don’t think we fool anybody for a minute. The life of a Christian can be grueling and if we don’t share that with others their expectations are faulty. We set them up to think there must be something wrong with them or that God doesn’t love them as much and the really shiny Christians! Blessings!

  7. Liz, I love the honesty and truth in your post. And fake shine vs faith shine? I never thought about it that way. I appreciate the reminder that we don’t have to put on that happy face all the time. People see Jesus more when they watch us grapple with life’s hard WITH Him.

    THis: “Faith shine is founded in His sovereignty not my circumstances . . . ” Yes. God taught me this years ago, but the reminder is still needful.

    Beautiful post!

  8. super and you are so right. my down days do not negate God’s goodness and holiness. we take on too much responsibility and perhaps God uses me best when I’m raw and honest. bless you friend, in your new place to love and be loved.

  9. I love your honesty in this post! So many times I have found myself doing the same thing – trying to make myself look put-together on the outside so I can be a good “witness.” God knows it is most often in our weaknesses that he shines the brightest!

  10. Yes, you’re right. We can’t be Debby Downers. But sometimes, to be real, is to let God’s light in- so it can shine out again. Love these points, so well done! and love the word study for “delight”. How appropriate. Thanks Liz

  11. I fake my shine all the time. My one word this year is surrender, so I especially liked your thoughts about surrender in suffering. Can I link to your post in one of my future posts?

    1. Of course you can share, Debbie! I’d be honored! I think this is a message more women need to take to heart! Surrender is a HARD word! I’m praying for you as God walks you through it this year! Blessings!

  12. I’m sorry my name was ever associated with being a downer but I’m trying to change that. Not with a fake shine but showing the spark that is there even when things are dark. Thanks for your good counsel.

  13. (((Liz))) Such a beautiful thing to witness your willingness to put aside the words you’d planned, and be obedient to the words He gave. I know He’ll be faithful to bring forth life from your obedience. — Love the “fake” versus “faith” context. — Thank you for your vulnerability. I appreciate you, friend. xoxo

    1. I can only be vulnerable when I know it’s within God’s will. He gives me courage! And I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one to ever feel like faking it! Praying God gives us all the courage to be vulnerable in the hard times and share the reason we have hope and light! Blessings! XOXO

  14. I’m definitely tempted to fake my shine at times, but there is so much freedom when we can find people to be honest with, when we don’t have to pretend. I have to remind myself that God’s power is made perfect in our weakness.

    1. Indeed! My shine has never been mine to shine, it all comes from The Light of the World! And that is the Light the darkness cannot overcome! Blessings to you, Leslie!

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