I have always had a deeper appreciation for woman who do not wear make-up. I know, call me weird…well, compared to most guys anyway. But, if you have taken the time to read any of my stuff, you should know I’m not most guys. There is just something about a woman who is safe in her own beauty to not feel the “need” for enhancements. Now, I understand most woman wear make-up to make themselves more beautiful, but their true beauty is under the make-up. Some don’t like wearing it all. They just put it on to be part of the crowd, you know…just like other women. I mean, heck, I would say 90% of woman wear make-up. Some even wear it to bed and yet some wear it while having sex. I don’t know why it just gets kissed or licked off..but that is not where I am going with this one. I liken make-up to a mask..per se. Woman will work for an hour sometimes putting on their covering mask for whatever reason they have for wearing it.
We, both genders, put on a mask at one time or another in our life. And that mask comes in just as many shades as make-up does. The problem with the mask is this: it hurts!
Growing up as children we always want to fit in and hang with the “in” crowd. We will do things that are “not” us in order to be in with the in crowd. We put on that mask, not necessarily to hide who we really are but to enhance ourselves in the eyes of others. Just like make-up.
Many try smoking to look cool. Most of those end up addicted to nicotine with black lungs and possible cancer. Many will have sex before marriage, not really because they want to but rather to be with the cool guys who have. Many girls will do it because some stupid guy said “if you love me”. Some have babies and keep them, some abort them and some get sexually transmitted diseases that can stay with them their whole life. And still some end up with self-worth issues based on what the other person did or said while having said sex.
Some will try drugs because they do not want to be a “chicken” in front of their friends. But that leads down a road to destruction for many. Some wear certain clothes to fit in. Prime example for this one would be goth. But it does not have to be as extreme as that. It can be as simple as a certain style shirt, pants or shoes.
But to me, the biggest and worse mask/make-up job we wear is the “I’m O.K.”. Almost everyday someone is going to ask you the simple question “How are you doing today?”. And most of us, myself included, answer it with I’m o.k. And we know dang well we have issues we are dealing with, even at that moment the question is being asked. But we smile anyway despite the fact our marriage could be failing, our bills are overtaking us, our health could be faltering, you could have recently lost a loved one….whatever the issues at hand may be. How many of us do that? All of us put that mask on….at least once a week.
James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed.
Faults do not necessarily have to be sins. A fault could be many things like a defect, an imperfection, a flaw, or a wrongful act. Or interestingly enough it could be that a particular sin has come into your life and has interfered with your line of communication with the Father. Many of times this happens to me…I’m not perfect. But I do confess my sin, first to the Father and then to my brothers in Christ who then will pray for me and then speak positive words into my heart, mind and life. It usually is difficult doing this but I always feel better afterwards.
If you have a defect or imperfection in your day, do not hold it in as that will lead to bitterness and sadness. Instead of holding it in confess it to someone, even if it is a stranger because it will help you feel better. Who knows that stranger may have asked that “How are you today?” question because God told them to. Maybe they are feeling the same way you are right now. Maybe, just maybe, God brought you two together at that moment to offer help to each other. To give each other hope for the day. Speak encouragement into the other persons life. Pray for them when you get home. It may do nothing to you other than make you feel better about yourself knowing that you are praying…again for the first time in days.
I lead the Celebrate Recovery 12 Step Study program for men at our church every Wednesday. Once we all get there we set down and ask the question “How was your week so far?”. We each then take turns telling each other of the events that have taken place and how we have felt. We then pray for one another. Now granted physical ailments may not be healed at that table but our relationship with the Father is refreshed and we do have a renewing in our spirits.
I challenge you this week to try it!