Façade. Front. Masquerade. Fake. Are these the words that describe your life?

WAIT! Before you stop reading…stay with me.

I know it may be difficult to admit, because these are not the adjectives you would commonly use when asked for a description.

These are not even words that others would use to describe your life based on what they have seen you accomplish, how you have excelled, or how much they know you really, really love God.

Instead, these are the “ugly” words – the ones we choose to hide and desperately guard, hoping they are never uncovered, for fear of being exposed. The silent words. The ones unspoken.

Yet, there they are; embedded in the recesses of our minds.

Façade. Front. Masquerade. Fake.

They rise to the surface of our thinking and settle in our gut each time we flash our huge “church smiles” while telling someone how “Blessed & Highly Favored!” we are.

They show up when we look at ourselves in the mirror. On one hand, a self- manufactured portrait of perfection – every hair in place, flawlessly beautiful makeup, and supermodel-ready outfits. On the other, a body sporting an invisible garment of heaviness; the weight of which exists just below the surface.

In the midst of our cover-up, these words are the ones we dare not bring to the light because we would run the risk of letting others in on our well-kept secret…

“I really am not who you think I am.”

We become players of the game and masters of disguise – while drowning in the same water we have allowed others to believe we walk on.

We continue our performance to audiences of many.

Those who love us. And those who hate or are completely indifferent concerning us. Encore after encore, returning to the stage, drooling over their applause. Longing for their acceptance and attention.

When the scene ends and the curtain closes, we lay down the persona like a costume, and come face-to-face with ourselves until we hear the crowd gathering for another show. And, because we have grown accustomed to only brief intermissions of sincere contemplation of our lives, we rise with vigor for the next act –

Lights, Camera, Action – We’re on!

Instead, we should be focused on our true sole obligation: playing to an audience of One and answering these questions of ourselves:

Who is that person?

Where does she belong?

What is her purpose?

Here is the thing…The journey to authenticity requires brutal honesty. It requires work. We cannot expect to get to an authentic response if we are unwilling to confront the fraudulent workings of our lives.

While many of us fear confrontation or try to avoid it at all costs, recapturing yourself is worth the encounter.

It is worth confronting yourself.

The real you has been covered long enough. She has lingered in the background while you have worn “the other you” like makeup; knowing deep within that it is not all “Easy…Breezy… Beautiful.”

The real you longs to break through. Longs to be free.

So now is your time to move from counterfeit living, to unleash your authenticity.

It is time to lay down the weight of your mask and to step into the light so the world can see who you are!

And here are three ways to do it:

1. Talk In The Mirror

The mirror is where crucial conversations can take place. Where you can be brutally honest with yourself and see the truest reflection of your reality.

It is here where you can claim who you really are, out loud: Daughter of the Most High, Queen, Marvelous, and Wondrously made. Say it out loud! Mean what you say! Live like you know it!

2. Let Go of “They”

Commit to no longer be consumed with the power of “they” – What will they say? What will they think? How will they feel?

Instead, you embrace the power of “I Am”.  I Am valuable! I Am strong! I Am beautiful! And…I Am enough!

When you let go of “they”, you are no longer held captive by the pressure to wear the mask for others. Letting go frees you to come out of hiding without fear of what others may perceive, assume, or imagine. Give yourself a healthy dose of “don’t care” and a generous portion of “so what!”

3. Live Unapologetically

Fully embrace your gifts, talents, and abilities as the phenomenal treasures they are. Allow God’s light to shine through you and do not dim it simply because someone else is uncomfortable with its brilliance.

Abandon The Façade. The Front. The Masquerade. The Fake. Live The Bravest. The Truest. The Realest. The Best life you can. Stand confidently, boldly, and courageously. You are an overcomer. You are a winner.

Dr. Atira Charles, creator of “The Mask Project” says it this way, “Your time is now to master the art of unmasking!” 

Now! Say it with me, “No more masks!”

It is time to celebrate your uniqueness and to release yourself from the pressure to be like…do it like…act like…appear like…or pretend like you are anything other than who God created you to be.

It is your time to shine! Do it AUTHENTICALLY!

 It’s Time to Discover the Real You

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