Sociologist Robert Ezra Park said, “It is probably no mere historical accident that the word person, in its first meaning, is a mask. It is rather a recognition of the fact that everyone is always and everywhere, more or less consciously, playing a role.”
In my life, the mask that was my biggest temptation was spiritual superhero. My writing instructor Judy Hougen described it this way in her book Transformed into Fire:
“We’re all haunted by some image of the perfect Christian – the person who is rarely ruffled, full of right answers, and tirelessly ‘there’ for everyone. Such people glide through life with a two-inch gap between their feet and the ground. They pray for ten hours a day and can recite the New Testament over coffee. And, most important, they seem to have no needs, no obvious wounds or weakness. They’re always cheerful, never touched by depression, loneliness, or other heavy emotions.”
Nope. No way. Not anymore.
It has been in sharing my wounds and revealing my weaknesses that I have been the truest version of me— and in doing so, I welcome others exactly as they are. And even scripture says that it’s in our weaknesses that God’s power is made perfect. So, like the Apostle Paul, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses.
Someone made a joke a couple weeks ago about my halo. I was quick to correct him.
I have set down the halo (which was itself a mask) so that I could take up freedom.