Losing the Mask Challenge Day #1

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If
you haven’t yet read this post, go do it now.

Welcome
to Day 1 of our Challenge Week- Removing the Masks!

I
had someone ask me, “What do you mean by mask?” For our purposes, we will use
this definition: Masks- The version of ourselves or our lives that we choose to
show to the world. This can be through social media outlets, phone
conversations, or even face to face interactions. We do this for many reasons-
to name a few: pride, survival, privacy and fear. 

From
a young age we are taught to do this. Even my five year old daughter knows how
to quickly slip on her ‘mask’ when her friends or teachers are around, and at
times, I’ve encouraged this behavior. To be transparent, masks are not always
bad. There are absolutely situations where we must put on our mask to function
and to get through certain events/days/situations. 

But
then there is the other extreme: when we begin to wear our mask permanently. Or
worse, when we begin to think that the masked version of who we are is preferred
and must be the only version of our self that we show. See, friends, God
created you uniquely for a specific purpose. Out of all the
billions and billions of people who have lived before and those that will be born in the
years to come, no one has been created and gifted just like you. The way your
brain functions, the talents you have, the personality traits, and skill set
that you have acquired- ALL of it
was designed for you to use to fulfill your specific calling. This
INCLUDES areas where you may be a bit of a mess; the areas where you struggle,
the places where you’ve seen God work, and the victories you’ve achieved
through by working through some of your weaknesses. 

When
we only let those around us see our ‘highlight reels’ or our victories, we lose
a valuable opportunity to show transparency, genuineness and the transforming
work of Christ in our struggles.

To
be honest with you, I struggle with this, too. I see the lives that others live
around me and sometimes feel pressured to do
or be or act in a certain way. At times I am tempted to try to fit the mold
that was designed only for someone else. If left unchecked, this can plant
seeds of doubt, or jealousy, or discontent. Feelings like that try to steal our
joy and to ruin whatever work God is doing in our hearts and lives, and can
derail the beautiful plan that He is putting together even now. 

Here’s
the good news: there is freedom in REMOVING YOUR MASK. There is freedom in
throwing your hands up and saying, “You know what? I don’t have it all
together. I’m a mess at times, and sometimes I’m not okay.” And it’s at that
moment, when we admit that we can’t do things on our own, that we aren’t able
to achieve some preconceived notion of perfection, that we realize our need for
Grace. And our need for God

I
am a mess. And often times, I am not okay. Truth is, neither are you. 
But
because I’ve met Jesus, He steps in and takes up any of the slack. He tells me
that I’m loved and cherished and valued exactly as I am. And friend, you are
too.

So
today we start with our first challenge. 
This one should be pretty easy. I want you to
snap a photo of something in your life/home/car that shows a glimpse into your
real life messes. This may be a physical mess, or it may be something different.
I want you to share it with me on the Wellness Witness facebook page, share it
on your Facebook account, Instagram or Twitter, or email it to me at
osborne_kara AT yahoo <dot> com. If you don’t have a photo but want to post a comment or status, that works, too! 

For some of you this may be scary, and
for others of us, it’s a bit freeing. Make sure that you tag the page so that I
can see it,  and feel free to use the
hashtag  #wellness witness #losingthemask
. I would love to share some of these on the page for those that are willing to
let me. 

Invite
friends to participate and spread the message that it is OKAY to not be okay all the time.

I’ll
be posting pics, too, so feel free to like and comment. When you see the pic
that someone else shares, comment and let them know that they’re not alone! 

Once
you’ve completed day #1, comment or message me and let me know! Tomorrow, we
move on to Assignment #2. 

Love
y’all…with or without your masks!!

Get Day #2 Challenge here

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