I came across this quote in Steve Brown’s book Three Free Sins, a great read.
The Late Henri Nouwen spent the last years of his life immersed in a community of handicapped adults. Forsaking the trappings of success and fame, he found his true identity.
“These broken, wounded, and completely unpretentious people forced me to let go of my relevant self – the self that can do things, show things, prove things, build things – and forced me to reclaim that unadorned self in which I am completely vulnerable, open to receive and give love regardless of any accomplishments. I am telling you all this because I am deeply convinced that the Christian leader of the future is called to be completely irrelevant and to stand in this world with nothing to offer but his or her own vulnerable self. That is the way Jesus came to reveal God’s love.” (Henri Nouwen, In the Name of Jesus (p.28-30)
All I (and you) have to offer others is our vulnerable selves; everything else is façade. Only God’s radical grace in Christ allows us such profound nakedness.