“I became good at pretending. I became so good that after a while the lines blurred between my truth and fiction. And sometimes, when I did a really good job of pretending, I even fooled myself.” ~ Ruta Sepetys
Lent is a season where, more than any other time of the year, we do our best to rip away the pretenses that we sometimes live under. We have become very good at hiding our real selves. We let the world see someone whom we have constructed but who may not be the actual person that we truly are inside. Unfortunately, doing this too long, we begin to delude ourselves as well. We begin to think that we are someone other than we are.
“You can fool all of the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time; but, you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.” This maxim, widely attributed to Abraham Lincoln but not certain in its source, certainly holds true. We might become quite adept at fooling almost everybody, even ourselves. However, there is one person whom we will never be able to fool: God.
Since the be all and end all of our existence is God, it would behoove us to attempt to be as honest as possible in our relationship with the Lord. In order to do so, we have to be as honest as possible with everyone else, including ourselves. If not, we will begin to become deluded and lose who we are.
There is nothing so incredibly bad about us that God cannot see and love and heal. That is the most basic truth of our faith. Our loving God shows His people extreme mercy. All we need to do is ask for His forgiveness and be truly contrite as we do so. If you see something inside yourself that you have deemed unlovable or unforgivable, give it over to the Lord who is all loving and all merciful. God is never as hard on us as we are on ourselves.
Lent should be a time of healing and hope, not a time to live in self-deception. Take a good honest look at yourself today. If there are things that you do not approve, do the best you can to change them. Ask God for the grace and courage to do so and you will find more than enough help from a God who loves you incredibly.
FAITH ACTION: Whatever you do, be honest and open in your relationship with God today.