Reflecting on the path. . .
Updated December 16, 2003

December 16, 2003

Seeing the good person behind the mask.

Sometimes it's the other person.

When it comes to hypocrites, sometimes it's the bad person.  Or maybe I should say that it is the good person wearing the bad person mask.  Sometimes when we say, "Now I know what you are really like!" we don't really.  The person hurt us in some way and often our first reaction is to hurt them back. 

But the "bad person" who hurt you is not always the real person.  Sometimes the bad person is the fake; the one who is not the real me; the one who said or did something that in no way accurately reflected what I believe and live for.  Or how I truly feel about the one I hurt or betrayed.

Here is what I am saying. 

Sometimes people think that we are putting the mask on when we are good, that we are being hypocrites, when actually that is the real person they are seeing.  The other person, the one that was rude or insensitive or hateful, was the fake, not the real me, not the real you.

And that may be why our God calls us to be forgiving. 

You see, if you don't get the hang of this forgiveness thing, then you will never see the good person behind that mask of fear, or rejection, or intimidation, or anger, or loneliness.

I remember Vance Havner once saying that there is enough heresy in all of us to sink a battleship.  And if we thought about it we might admit that there is at least a little bit of hypocrite in all of us.

So without minimizing someone's wrong behavior or discounting the need to confront the same, maybe there are times when we need to wade through our own hurt feelings and try to see behind the mask.  Quite often there is a good person who is ashamed of the sinful behavior that obscured who they really are and how they really care for you.

"And be kind to one another,
tenderhearted, forgiving one another,
just as God in Christ forgave you."
(Ephesians 4:32 NKJV
Right words, wrong time.                                                  April 18, 1999
Job's friends.                                                                       April 25, 1999
Why?                                                                                    April 25, 1999
Every word of God is flawless.                                           May 19, 1999
Pure joy.                                                                              May 20, 1999
Persevering toward pure joy.                                            May 21, 1999
How do I feel. . .?                                                                 May 23, 1999
Kindness or judgment?                                                         May 23, 1999
Winning with our tongues?                                                  May 30, 1999
A good day to die!                                                                 June 6, 1999
Pure joy revisited.                                                                June 6, 1999
Nearsighted and blind?                                                        June 20, 1999
God's standards.                                                                  June 21, 1999
Looking back a mile or two down the road, 1999 to be precise.

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