Knock, knock! Guess who?
This past week my kids dressed up and trick-or-treated. As the snow fell, they and their friends dashed from house to house gathering candy. Their costumes ranged from Eeyore, a pink unicorn, a football player, to a black and green Ghillie. Some kids' identities remained hidden until they removed their masks.
While my kids sorted and sampled their goodies, they giggled about the different costumes and guessed the different people.
People masquerade during Halloween because pretending to be someone else is fun. But what about in our daily lives, do we pretend because being authentic is scary?
If we reveal our true selves, will others accept us?
We plaster smiles on our faces and say, "Everything is fine," but inside we are hurting.
We struggle with character flaws, mood swings, nasty tempers, and moral failures.
We stuff our fears, doubts, and loneliness and only show our righteous deeds.
Fears of rejection, judgment, and embarrassment keep us pretending.
But what if we take our masks off...
When people ask how we are doing, we say,
"I'm struggling with...and they offered to help.
I'm thankful for...and they rejoiced with us.
I'm worried about...and they prayed with us.
Are we willing to take the risk?
"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8 NIV
"All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away." Isaiah 64:6 NIV
When we remove our masks, we have nothing good in ourselves. We are sinners, but God loves us and offers His Son. Our true IDENTITY is in CHRIST alone.
Christ work on the cross paid for our sins. He loves us and wants us! In our masquerading world, God loves us unconditionally without our masks. After accepting Christ as our Savior, we belong to God.
The key to authentic living is finding peace in God and then living it before others. They see our messy lives and the hope we have in Christ.
1. We need to wear humility. God desires justice, mercy, and humility (Micah 6:8).
2. We need to focus on the Gospel. Our lives are to glorify God (I Corinthians 10:31; 2 Corinthians 4:12-11).
3. We need to be genuine. God desires pure hearts, good consciences, and sincere faith (1 Timothy 1:5).
Lord, help us to be authentic so that others can see Your transforming work and power. Help us to have compassion with others and take the time to love them like You do.