Friday, July 25, 2008

Taking off the Mask

Masks... We all wear them at one time or another. I am currently reading and working through a workbook called
Embracing God's Design For Your Life
by Sheila Walsh. I have been working through this book for quite some time so that I could take my time on it and really be honest when giving my answers. I am currently working through a chapter about letting go of our mask. For a long time I held so tightly to my mask. They were my safest place to be. They became so "safe" in fact I questioned who I even was because I had so many of them. The problem with our mask is that they are really not a safe place at all. They are rather a wall that we have built between ourselves and the world and ourselves and God thinking and believing we may not get hurt. The question is "What would it take for us to really be transparent?" Sheila Walsh writes:

"When we are willing to stand in our brokenness and let the light of Christ shine through our lives, the good news is preached to the poor in spirit, the blind can see the truth, and the lame and wounded can walk again."

When have we been so willing to be vulnerable and transparent that it has allowed us to serve as a bridge for another's pain? Every week I attend a meeting once a week with several other women. It isn't easy. It is one of the hardest things I think I've ever done. Some weeks I even hate it! But several years ago, I made a choice that I no longer wanted to wear the mask that hid all that stuff on the inside of me. I am the first to say right now, "No, all my mask have not just disappeared." It still amazes me though just how many people can see me and treat me differently just because they know I go to a meeting like this or because they I know struggle with this disease. My mask and fears combined with their actions only continue the lack of brokenness Christ calls  to have so that his mission may be fulfilled. and those hurting and in pain can come and be comforted. Today think about what it would cost to take off a mask and then think about the fact that God calls each of us to encourage one another and share in one another's sufferings. 
"Praise be to God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is the Father who is full of mercy and all comfort. He comforts us every time we have trouble, so when others have trouble, we can comfort them with the same comfort God gives us. We share in the many sufferings of Christ. In the same way, much comfort comes to us through Christ. If we have troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation, and if we have comfort, you also have comfort. This helps you to accept patiently the same sufferings we have. Our hope for you is strong, knowing that you share in our sufferings and also in the comfort we receive."
2 Corinthians 1:3-7(NCV)

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