Wednesday, November 12, 2014

It's complicated

I love the options you get on Facebook for setting your relationship status. Single, married, divorced, widowed, in a relationship, in a domestic partnership ... and then ... there's ...

"It's complicated"

Really?? In my world, that's not a relationship status as much as it is a page out of the Book of DUH! Of course it's complicated ... it's a relationship!

St. Paul said in his first letter to the Corinthians that "we see through a glass darkly but soon we shall see face to face." He's speaking to the truth that so much of our lives and selves are hidden from the sight of others - never from God, but definitely from others.

We all wear masks to show our best selves off to the rest of the world. Nowhere is that more evident than on Facebook where everyone pumps up their profiles with how cool and hip they are - even as their lives are falling apart behind that computer screen. What we put on social media rarely hints as the broken screwed up parts of ourselves - the parts we fear, the parts others will reject, the parts we hate, the ugliness within. No, we put on our masks and pontificate about our brilliant lives, our stellar ideas (especially when those ideas can be positioned as superior to someone else's), our fantastic careers, etc. And yet all the while we are inside knowing this isn't the whole truth.

It's complicated, isn't it? When the public persona doesn't match the private despair. When the face we show everyone else doesn't match the one we show to our spouses or loved ones. Some people have a high degree of transparency and what you see is pretty much what you get. Others have mastered the repressed dual life and hide behind a mask so well that they really don't know they are doing it anymore ... until they are under duress and the mask slips. It's complicated.

Christ died for the whole of us ... but most especially he died for those ugly repressed parts of ourselves that we really don't want to show others - the complicated stuff. "By his blood he reconciled us. By his wounds we are healed."

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