The Key of Transparency


John 13

1 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.
2And supper being ended, the devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray Him, 3Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, 4rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself. 5After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded.

12So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? 13You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. 14If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. 16Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. 17If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.

In John, 13, we need to grab the key of TRANSPARENCY.  Go ahead, examine the text once again; it’s there! In this occasion, Jesus the master teacher gave us something just as applicable today as it was for his first disciples. Yes, it’s true, legitimate, master teachers practice transparency with their inner disciples.

Yet, this runs so contrary and counter to what we see in our culture’s version of the Christian faith today! In my view, unfortunately, the majority of those who may consider themselves as master teachers, seem anything but transparent!

C’mon now. Let’s be honest! There are more games being played in churches today than in kindergarten! Yes, I agree.  There is far too much makeup! No, not cosmetically but spiritually! We cover up more blemishes, scars and wounds in ministry than Maybelline, Avon or Mary Kay ever could!

So, let’s waste no time today beating around the bush today! We need to help someone who’s been locked out of the truth and therefore can’t get free.

Child of God you need to know this: the anointed and appointed person that you are serving under from the Pope down to the newest Bishop in the district is a fallible, flesh and blood human being with strengths and weaknesses;  intelligence and ignorance; faith and fears. Furthermore; they too have some major and I do mean MAJOR issues that they have either come out of or still working on….and sometimes both!!!!

The problem is, far too many of us in ministry have been told to go the traditional way that says “Stand up straight, square your shoulders, put a smile on your face and never let them see you crying!” Rest assured, this psychological strategy may work for a few battles but what do you do when your losses, scars and wounds tend to continue accumulating? What do you do when the weeks turn to months and the months turn to years and then season after season you’ve never shed one single tear about any of your losses or any of the severe wounds that you have received while engaged in spiritual battle and you’ve never taken the time to grieve any of your pain?

How do you process all of the fake friends who come your way? How to you process the goo-gobs of people who smile at you in your face; waiting for the right moment to stab you in the back? How do you rightly interpret the countless acts of passive aggressiveness or dead silence from folk you thought would be there for you but who only gave you the sound of crickets when you needed them? What do you do with the wounds created by the persons you went out of your way to heal? How do you mourn the loss of people you loved on but walked away and never even said farewell?

C’mon now! It is what it is …. there are casualties in ministries and fatalities too! This thing is not for the faint at heart. It is neither for those with low self esteem or for those who think to highly of themselves! No, ministry is for those who can be real with God; real with themselves and therefore real with others.

Find one general or commanding officer worth anything at all that has ever gone to war and suffered tragic losses and not shed rivers of tears! I double dog dare you to try! Why are we as spiritual leaders so willing to become such deceivers? Why won’t we just be REAL? That’s why our Lord commended the little children the way he did; because the one thing they are if they are anything is REAL!

Here’s what I’m trying to say: Every leader needs to be able to practice transparency with some degree of an inner circle. There’s someone connected to you that will only be able to go to their next level when you are strong enough and authentic enough to disrobe in front of them and serve them with your nakedness. We lead and serve our leaders best when we are transparent; hiding no wound and no thing.

In other words, there is a God called, group of leaders we are assigned to pour our lives into, in order to empower them without any shame, humiliation or fear of embarrassment. God is challenging you not to be afraid to allow them to see who you  have been, are and will be. They need that for their own development; it will not be sufficient to show them your strengths only; they must see your scars too.

Oh, what courage it takes to wield this master key we call TRANSPARENCY. Yes, I’m so glad that Jesus demonstrated it with his disciples. The question is: will you do it for yours?  Not all! But the right ones. [right-eous ones] You’ll know who they are!

So, contrary to the tradition that you may have been holding to, may I challenge you this season to reposition yourself with those you are over; to go under them and see that the only way that you will ever truly launch them into their greater is when you get courageous enough to be your true self in their presence.

True leadership needs no makeup, make believe or any other form of manipulation because you’ll never lose what was really yours and it’s no benefit to gain what already isn’t. Are you looking for followers or are you creating leaders? If so, go get your key & set some folk free while you’re at it.  This KEY is  called transparency.