I was staring out the window the other day watching the sun cast glittering rays over the clean, white snow. I thought about all the snow we've had this year and how, for the most part, it has looked pretty all season long. A smooth, white, frozen, beautiful blanket.
In a few short weeks it will begin to melt and then it won't look so pretty anymore. It will look dirty and create mud everywhere I go.
I thought about this in the context of our lives. Many of us wear a pretty mask out in public. We present ourselves to the world with our best face forward and try not to inconvenience people with our struggles, our fears, our doubts, or our flaws.
Of course this is natural. We aren't going to show our deepest selves to just anyone. Strangers don't get to know us in the same way our family does. But are we wearing this mask when we approach God as well?
Do we want God to see us as good, put-together humans who have it all figured out? Do we pray as though we don't want to inconvenience God with our struggles, our fears, our doubts, or our flaws? I know I have done this before and I probably still do at times.
I know there are times when I'm dealing with something and I avoid taking it to God. Why? I don't know. I want to try and figure it out myself, or fear a rebuke even though I know God better than that and know that no matter what I bring to Him, he will be calm, patient, and loving.
Choosing to remove our masks with God can be an ugly process. Ugly because the beautiful, clean, white, frozen, blanket we've built up begins to thaw and melt. It mixes with all the things we've been trying to hide from Him and creates mud. We don't like mud. We don't like feeling broken, out of sorts, or overemotional.
But when we allow God to thaw the mask and heal our broken pieces, then eventually that mud settles down and soon flowers begin to grow. A field covered in snow is beautiful to be sure, but it's dead. There is no life in the frozen tundra. But a field of grass and flowers? That is place buzzing and swaying with life.
Uncovering the mud behind the mask is the first step. It isn't comfortable letting God thaw us out. It's messy. But it's so worth it.