What if … We Take Off the Masks

what if we take off the masks {10 ways to live well in today's world}

We’re nearing the end of this “What if … 10 ways to live well in today’s world” series. We’ve looked at several important topics such as doing something instead of everything, embracing good enough, taking a nap, choosing to be content, pursuing our passions, and giving ourselves grace. Today’s topic is a tough one:

What if we take off the masks?
what if we take off the masks {10 ways to live well in today's world}

I’m reading {again} Emily Freeman’s incredible book, Grace for the Good Girl. I started re-reading it a few weeks ago when I realized I was struggling with wearing the masks again. You know the masks I’m talking about …

  • “I’m fine.”
  • “Life is good.”
  • and that social media mask #soblessed.

I had to pull out Emily’s book and go to that dog-eared page toward the beginning where I’ve underlined, highlighted, and circled a sentence, this sentence …

My idea of who I should be is at war with who I am. (16)

Who I should be.

Y’all, if you could peek inside my mind and see all the expectations swirling around … well, first off, I’d be embarrassed.  Because truly, I really do know how unreasonable most of them are. And yet, there they are blaring out their chorus of accusation about what I ought to do and who I should be. And far too often, I believe the peanut gallery is right.

So I try harder and beat myself up for every failure.  But you  won’t see that.

You’ll see pictures of my beautiful daughter {and never hear that every day I wonder if I’m messing this motherhood thing up}.

You’ll hear me talk about how thankful I am for my husband {and never know how much I worry I’m not a good enough wife for him}.

You’ll see the photos of the dirty kitchen {and never know that as soon as I post them I’ll rush to clean it all up so I can post pictures of the clean kitchen}.

You’ll read the quotes from my quiet time {and never have a clue how much I feel inadequate in Bible study and teaching}.

My masks are as numerous as the unmatched socks in my laundry room … and just as frustrating!

What happens if I take off the masks … if I come clean about how messed up and insecure and afraid I am? What happens if I tell you the truth — that parenting a teenager is so much harder than I ever dreamed, that building a life with my husband is sometimes a battle between two people who like to be right, that my desire to grow spiritually is often superseded by my longing to be liked?

Here's what I know: I'm not the only one who wonders if I'm a good mom. I'm not the only one who struggles to put her husband ahead of herself. I'm not the only one who fights the battle to dig deep spiritually.  The enemy wants me to think I am alone, that my fears and questions and doubts and insecurities separate me from all the other people who have it together. But he's a liar. Because it is those very fears and questions and doubts and insecurities that make me the most like the people around me. We all have them. And the answer to overcoming them isn't putting on the masks, it's trusting in our Maker, the one who created us and loves us.

All those masks let me pretend to be who I think I should be. But they don’t change who I really am.

The masks let me pretend to be who I think I should be. http://wp.me/p3aJPA-22W Click To Tweet

And, the sad thing is, I bet you know exactly what I’m talking about. Because you have masks of your own.

So what if we take them off? What if we choose to trust each other with the truth of how much we don’t know and how scared we are and how fragile life is? What if we start a revolution like that … a move toward honesty and acceptance.  What if we take off our masks and celebrate the freedom we find?

What if we take off our masks and celebrate the freedom we find? http://wp.me/p3aJPA-22W Click To Tweet

Here’s what I know: I’m not the only one who wonders if I’m a good mom. I’m not the only one who struggles to put her husband ahead of herself. I’m not the only one who fights the battle to dig deep spiritually.

The enemy wants me to think I am alone, that my fears and questions and doubts and insecurities separate me from all the other people who have it together. But he’s a liar. Because it is those very fears and questions and doubts and insecurities that make me the most like the people around me. We all have them. And the answer to overcoming them isn’t putting on the masks, it’s trusting in our Maker, the one who created us and loves us.

So let’s make this our declaration—that we will no longer live hidden behind the masks of what we should be but will together step into the light and freedom of who we are.

Let’s drop the masks, y’all!

xo,

Teri Lynne

What masks do you hide behind?

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