Tuesday, February 15, 2011

On editing

Wendy's post on authenticity and openness has got me thinking*. I'm a believer in authenticity and openness up to a point. But I'm also a believer in editing.

We all edit. Even if you think you are just saying stuff as it is, you are editing.

And we should edit. All the pettiness and ingratitude in my heart is horrible and I shouldn't want to share it with you. To voice it is often to give it oxygen. We ought to edit it from our conversation and  writing because we want to cut it from our lives.

So I think we need to edit sin. Not that we should try to make ourselves look better than we are, but sin is ugly. It's details are unpleasant to hear and read and if they are not, then that's even more dangerous.

But there's other stuff we should edit too. Some of our struggles and even some of our joys. It may not be helpful for people to hear these. We can choose who we share certain things with. That's not being unauthentic or closed. It can be consideration.


Openness and authenticity - Yes. Let people know you. But:

  • guard people from the details of your sin. They mostly don't need to know.
  • don't complain or grumble. That's not openness. It's just ungodliness.
  • be considerate about who you share what with.


*I've got no problems with anything Wendy wrote.


  1. As part of my job, I sometimes get to hear people's complaints / bitchiness against their neighbours - I wish they would edit. I guess they want to vent, but maybe they should vent to someone they know, not a random council worker.

  2. I agree with you.

    But in my experience the opposite problem is the more serious.

  3. I agree. The internet doesn't need to be filled up with what a friend of mine calls "pus" - infectious, poisonous goop spilling out of people's bleeding wounds, that needs to be expelled and cleaned-up somewhere else.

    Shame that when we're in the grip of that is often when we most feel like "sharing" ...

  4. Uh oh. I think my blog has been guilty of under-editing sin this week....

    Thanks for the reminder. I need it.

  5. I like it when people don't overshare.

  6. I think Bonhoeffer said something about how spiritual nakedness is as unattractive as physical nakedness at times.

    Clothes are good. We need them in this life outside the Garden.

  7. I was wondering if someone would make these comments in response to my post. I totally agree. However I do think it is easier to point out the ugliness of oversharing than the deceit of creating a nice public image and discouraging others with your 'perfection'.

  8. PS Thanks for the disclaimer Simone.

  9. I think it depends what your tendency is towards. I find sharing myself - sin and all - fairly easy. I'm an open kind of a person. Not saying stuff is the hard part.

  10. I think...actually, I think I'm best to keep my opinions on this topic to myself.

  11. You're right Simone. I grew up being labeled a chatterbox - I'm just an older one now! For us, sanctification is to work on holding back, for others, sanctification is to work on revealing more of themselves to others.