It's masks. We pretend. Like Clinton saying "it was wrong", not I was wrong. "I didn't have..." Sometimes we lie to ourselves the most. "I'm a good boss." "I work hard." We can't handle the truth. So many build strong walls to keep anyone from knowing who they really are. My father is such a one. Friendly, never seems to be angry. Always in control. Yet that wall keeps him from intimate relations, keeps him from admitting he needs help. He wears a mask to hide his weakness. He is in the hospital, one of the reasons posting has been lax. Death has been close these past few months.
We must become whole. Be so permeated with the Holy Spirit our joy is obvious to all who see us. The amazing thing I've learned is how God has a purpose in everything we do. It isn't being a puppet, but a co-conspirator with God. Hearing Him constantly, to know you aren't alone, but walk, what can be a very dangerous road; with Him.
When we wear masks, pretending it's OK, it kills us. We live lies.
"How are you?"
"Fine."(When your heart is breaking, and the pain is too much to endure.)
In the impossible times lately, it is only knowing I am not alone, keeps me sane. Knowing; no matter how dark, no matter how impossible, I can choose joy. To be able to walk with Jesus so close all I have to do is reach out and know He is there. The world doesn't know that. For the world, there is no purpose except the mindless pursuit of more. More that is never enough.
That is the difference. A Christian can know true peace. The world only knows the fake peace of a "drug" that numbs mindfulness and makes you think it's alright. A Christian knows there is purpose. The world only knows the rat race that leads to death.
"How firm a foundation" is one of my favorite hymns. It sums up this attitude, and Jesus speaks to us from its words.
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
is laid for your faith in his excellent word!
What more can he say than to you he hath said,
to you who for refuge to Jesus hath fled?
"Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
for I am thy God and will still give thee aid.
I'll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.
"When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
the rivers of sorrow shall not overflow.
For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,
and sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
"When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
my grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply.
The fire shall not hurt thee; I only design
thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine."
"The soul that on Jesus hath leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes.
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I'll never, no never, no never forsake!"
I keep a copy of that hymn with me always. I hear the voice of Jesus. As we walk together through deep waters, (It took two hours to drive to the hospital today), and fiery trials, to know his joy is wonderful. True peace.