February 9, 2014

Your Best Face Forward

Those notorious Pharisees.  The great pretenders.  MASTERS of disguise. Hiding behind their pretentious masks.  The only face anyone ever saw----their best face forward. 

The very IMAGE .... of ..... PERFECTION.

Unwilling to expose all that lie underneath the masks.  Unwilling to be vulnerable.  Transparent.  Unwilling to admit that they found this image of law-keeping perfection IMPOSSIBLE to maintain.  Never would they humble themselves or stoop so low to admit their flaws. (they didn't HAVE any!) That they were FRAGILE.  HUMAN. At times INCAPABLE.  In need of GRACE.  And NEVER would you find them at the feet of JESUS in search of ANSWERS.  They didn't HAVE questions without answers.  And if they did? ... the words would never cross their tight lips. 

Standing tall.  Poised.  Stoic.  Careful not to let them see that inside?  They were just as broken and in need of Grace as the rest.  Could they even SEE through their OWN masks? Did they even know their own need for a SAVIOR? 

I noticed recently (even for myself and what has brought me comfort, hope, and peace in the last 9 months) that Psalms is one of the most quoted books of the Bible. Maybe it's because it's that raw HONEST vulnerability that David had that we find we can relate to. AND appreciate. That transparency.....
In his grief. In his sin. In his remorse and regret. In his fear. In his rejoicing. In his gratitude. In his strengths AND in his weakness. 

There was no part of his heart that he withheld from God.

 Perhaps if we took that same approach before the One who already KNOWS.  He already SEES.  He's not wanting to call us out to SHAME us.  To humiliate us.  To make us feel weak and intimidated.  He's waiting for US to surrender those things to Him so He can perfect them.  

The REAL Jesus can only help the REAL you.
You are doing yourself a favor when you take the mask off. He knows what's behind it anyway.

AUTHENTICITY. That's where we grow. In the MESSY soil of our imperfections. Our flaws. The frailty of HUMAN NATURE. It's REAL.

If we only ever showed Him our BEST face forward but unwilling to surrender the bruised, calloused, broken pieces of us then He could never REDEEM, HEAL and RESTORE those things in US that we are INCAPABLE of fixing on our own.

Somewhere we've come to believe the lie that the smallest mistake or flaw RENDERS US USELESS to the kingdom of God and those around us.

The BIBLE is FULL of stories of men and women who were just that.....IMPERFECT. Those were the people Jesus reached out to. Those were the people He singled out. Where KINDNESS met imperfection. Where GRACE collides with HUMANITY. And in that same story we see MIRACLES, REDEMPTION and RESTORATION take place that otherwise couldn't happen unless they first were honest with GOD and with each other.
When we are transparent before God and allow Him to see us in all of our vulnerability it is only THEN He has something to work with. 

You can take the masks off.  He's not fooled by them anyway.
The HEART of David was beautiful....and it's what God is after. An HONEST heart.
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