Take Off Your Mask of Perfection!

We have an expectation that life should be perfect. And if it’s not, then we need to somehow pretend that everything’s ok. I knew someone who, when asked how he was, would reply, “Absolutely wonderful.” Yet, the more I got to know him, I understood that things were clearly not wonderful in this man’s life. But his response was always the same when he was asked how he was.

It always sat heavily on my heart that this brother in the Lord could not be honest about what he was truly going through. Why is it that we followers of the Messiah are afraid to show that we are struggling? Do we think that if we reveal our struggle that others may look down at us? Why is it that we need to pretend that everything is perfect, when in reality it’s not?

I believe one of the main reasons is that we are afraid that if we show we are struggling, we may think that our faith is weak – and even worse – that others may think so as well. We are very quick to judge our brothers and sisters in the Lord when they struggle, and this has to stop.

My dear brothers and sisters, struggles, tests, and trials are an inevitable part of our lives; we can’t escape them nor deny them. I believe that we should be real with one another and not put on an outward show to impress others. What people think about us is their problem, not ours!

It is during the times of struggles, tests, and trials that we should be more real than ever. We should not be afraid to show or share our struggles because there is nothing wrong in struggling with something. It is our faith that carries us through those times, and gives us strength to stand firm in Him as we go through some temporary trials.

Let us not fool ourselves into thinking we are the only ones going through difficult times, or struggling with sin. No one is perfect, and we cannot fool ourselves, or others with false perfection. One of the things that I’ve learned over the years of being a follower of the Messiah is that when others look at us, they want to see the “real” us, and we should not be afraid to be transparent. In fact, our honesty can be a strong encouragement to someone else who is struggling!

Our faith is the “glue” that keeps us connected to the Lord, and is our great hope in Him. I’ll never forget years ago when I sat with a fellow Israeli, and he stopped me in the middle of our conversation with tears in his eyes and said, “Moran don’t you understand that I want to have what you have?” He saw that in the midst of trials and struggles, I still had hope.

And the hope of Messiah is what the world is desperate for today. Let’s shine some hope into the darkness by being real and true, first with ourselves, and then with each other.

This article originally appeared on Hope for Israel, September 14, 2016, and reposted with permission.