It is Halloween time! Halloween is the time when we put on costumes and pretend to be something we are not. Kids enjoy this holiday and many adults still dress up. While it is fun to put on a costume and pretend, do we put on masks throughout the rest of the year spiritually and emotionally? When we try to hide our true selves we resort back to the actions of our original parents; Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve were naked and not ashamed before sin entered the world. They were in complete harmony and fellowship with God. They had nothing to hide. But after Satan deceived them, their eyes were opened knowing good and evil. They had sinned. They sought to cover their nakedness with fig leaves and hide themselves from the presence of God (Genesis 2-3).
Why do people pretend to be someone they are not?
Four reasons come to my mind of why we hide ourselves today. Some hide themselves because they are seeking protection and safety. Adam and Eve were afraid, so they hid. We are often afraid of judgement and rejection. We are afraid of what others may think, so we pretend. A second reason we wear masks is because we want to deceive others. Our lies come from our desire to wear a mask to fool others. We are afraid of being exposed for what we really are in an area, so we lie and try to deceive others. We try to bluff our way through life. Sometimes it is only half-truths we tell, but they are still whole lies! A third reason people wear masks is because of the expectations of others. There was a country song a few years back by Chris Young called “Voices.” It was about the expectation we hear from previous generations who still influence us. While this is often very good, if the expectations are harmful or unrealistic it causes us to wear a mask. People can try to be who they are not in order to please the expectation of another. A fourth reason many wear a mask is they desire to practice sin. Masks are worn by selfish people. Jesus tells about the Laodiceans who were consumed with their wealth and pleasure. They were hiding their true selves in the money and pleasure of their city, but Jesus said they were really naked and miserable (Rev. 3:17-18). This is why some folks who look like they have it all, wear a fake smile and laugh, but inwardly they are hurting and empty.
Being Who We Are and Meant to Be!
This Halloween determine to take off your emotional and spiritual masks as well! Psalm 139:23-24 says, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties; And see if there is any wicked way in me, And lead me in the way everlasting.” We need to realize that joy, peace, and contentment come, not through hiding, but through being open and transparent. We have to be real with our struggles. We have to confess our sins and shortcomings. We have to turn to God for help and strength. Being who we truly are is not about selfishness, but rather surrender. It is the refusal to hide and pretend. It is being humble. It is only then that we can become truly who we were meant to be in the power of Christ. It is at the point of our humility and transparency that Christ is able to be formed in us and our identity no longer is fake but is real in Jesus (1 Cor. 11:1; 2 Cor. 3:18).