There really is no freedom in hiding behind a mask.
I said this in conversation with a friend today when she asked why I was about to bare my soul and the revelations I’ve had about myself on Facebook. I told her that if I always have to prove myself, put on airs and keep up appearances, who will ever know ME? How will I know that someone ever loves ME? When I disappoint or don’t keep up the facade, will people cling to the act while leaving ME behind? There really is power in humility.
Many people have the wrong idea about God, the Bible and humility, or being humble. They think being humble means groveling in front of others or thinking they are no good and others are better.
That’s not what the Bible says. God says when you are humble, you are free from pride and arrogance. You know that in your flesh you are inadequate, yet you also know who you are in Christ. This means that you don’t have to boast in and of yourself. You don’t have to put up vain images of who you really are because you recognize that His strength is made perfect in your weakness and His is the only opinion that really matters.
God’s opinion of you is grand, by the way. I believe many of us have been raised with a false idea of righteousness – believing that He looks down on us in pity and shame and only our works make us right with Him. We work so hard to look good or gain approval when He tells us plainly that our righteousness is a result of Jesus’s work on the cross (2 Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians 2:8-9). It is not anything we can earn. This translates into our relationships with people as well. We work so hard to try to earn love and acceptance from others that we put up these facades and struggle to maintain them in our secret places and private times.
In some way, I believe all of us desire to be free to be ourselves and to be honestly accepted in our nakedness. Our hearts cry out to others “do you love ME?” not “do you love what I do?” The plain truth is that we secretly long for the freedom to admit we’re broken. But there are too many voices telling us to keep up appearances, because if we don’t, our life will fall apart.
There are too many voices telling us to adjust our behavior on the outside and the bad stuff will somehow trickle away. That’s why people nowadays have become masters of illusion, experts at “faking it until we make it”, abusers of pain and mental health medication, slaves to debt, followers of fads, and partakers of deep loneliness. Because we won’t realize that the only solution for being broken is being humble.
But what about our heart condition? What about the things God looks at. 1 Samuel 16:7 says that man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks upon the heart. The good news is that God makes the broken whole. He takes the overlooked, the undervalued, the left out, the written off, the damaged and destroyed, and then he does what only He can do. God loves to make the broken beautiful, but He can only honestly and truly do so when we find the power in humility, take off our masks and admit “God, I am so broken and only YOU can fix me.”
Friend, let me encourage you today to let go of what things SHOULD look like and be honest about where you are. Admit your shortcomings. Let your life fall apart in God’s hands so that He can mend your broken pieces. I hope you find the power in humility.