Behind the Mask

“Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” — James 5:16 (NIV)

Why do we like to keep our problems to ourselves? We do so for a number of reasons. Our fear that being candid about our problems would result in the loss of our respect and reputation in the eyes of those around us is a dominant one. Another reason is that we are too prideful to admit that there is something wrong with us and we soldier on, denying that there are issues in our lives which need to be dealt with. Yet another reason for Christians especially is the false assumption that followers of Christ need to have their lives in a constant state of perfection and it is unthinkable that a true Christian should have problems in their lives. Such an attitude in particular is soundly debunked considering the fact that there is not a sinless person in the Bible save or Christ Himself. All of the characters in God’s Word who are labelled “Heroes of the Faith” were broken and sinful people. Yet thankfully it was not their own efforts or deeds that made them righteous, but it was God’s work through them which sanctified them and made them obedient to His purposes.

No one is perfect in this world. The sinful nature of mankind is its equalizer and thus no one can truly be justified in adopting a “holier-than-thou” attitude because in all likelihood, they have many issues in their lives which need to be dealt with. This should serve as a strong reminder for Christians to discard any inhibitions they may have about sharing their problems with each other and seeking guidance from those who are also on a journey with Christ. Since God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit commune together as one, we as believers should adopt the same attitude if we want to follow Christ’s example. We are one body, a community where if one person hurts, the rest of the body feels it as well. We should never feel that being open with our problems will make us weak or vulnerable. More often than not, when a believer shares his problems with another, he will find that the person he is sharing his problems with is also dealing with same issue. Thus they may counsel, strengthen, and pray for each other, contributing to the unity of the brotherhood of Christ and to the refinement of fellow followers of the Saviour.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.