Today’s fast is appearances.
When my kids were young we watched a movie in which one of the female characters worked hard to keep up a perfect appearance in hopes of “catching her man”. But all her efforts were undone by a child who saw through the fake.
“Does your face hurt?”, asked the little girl, referring to the obvious strain required to try to keep that smile exactly right.
I’ve often thought about how much energy I’ve wasted trying to pretend that I’m something I’m not.
It’s especially tempting to put on that “holy habit” when I walk through the doors of church or gather for a women’s ministry event.
Wear the right thing, say the right thing, never let my guard down or confess to struggling.
I am guilty of affirming and rewarding others who look like they have it all together while sometimes ignoring or marginalizing those who are clearly having a hard time. This only perpetuates the ongoing pressure to “measure up” lest we be found wanting.
But Jesus does not ask me to “fake it til I make it”.
He invites me to come with all my mess and lay it at His feet where He will turn ashes to beauty and bring fruit from barrenness as I abide in Him.
I love, love, love what Alicia Britt Chole says: “Our reality doesn’t frustrate Jesus. Our hypocrisy does.”
So for (at least!) one day fast facades.
Take off the mask. Be real.
He already knows.
**As promised, I am sharing thoughts on 40 DAYS OF DECREASE (a Lenten journal/devotional). If you choose to get and use the book yourself, I’ll be a day behind in sharing so as not to influence anyone else’s experience.**