ICEBERGS…are large pieces of freshwater ice that have broken off a glacier or an ice shelf and are floating freely in open water. Personally, I have never seen one but my daughter and her son experienced them on a cruise along the coast of Alaska. It’s on my bucket list.
They may be beautiful, but undeniably are dangerous to encounter. An incredible phenomena of God’s nature. You probably know that what you see is not all there is. Only about 10% of a typical iceberg is visible with the major part underwater and therein lies the danger. The Titanic shipwreck occurred in 1912 when the great ship struck one of the more than 40,000 icebergs born on the coast of Greenland each year. 1,517 lives were lost as a result of the encounter.
This past week, our Fathers Forum speaker made an interesting observation. He said today in the generation of social media, people post copious photos on Facebook or Instagram showing their fun times and the good side of life. ‘Selfies’ are all over the board; with smiling faces, at the beach, eating good food, etc. We get to see what they want us to see. It would make you believe that all is well, that life’s a blast, free of issues. But, like the iceberg, what about the majority of life that no one sees?
We wear our masks well. Putting forth a strong image, when maybe all along, we are dying inside. The iceberg is melting away underwater. And for many of us, so are we. Does this resonate? ‘How are you today’, someone asks. ‘Fine, great, awesome, blessed‘ is most times our reply.
You may be having the worst week of your life but you keep up a front. Am I wrong?
I was getting my tires changed at Discount Tires last week. An older man walked in and the service agent met him and said, ‘Good morning’. The man’s reply; ‘If you say so‘. He was getting close to being honest.
Another one of my friends recently shared this with me. When someone asks him how he is doing, his reply; ‘The short answer is great, but if you have half a day, I’d be happy to tell you the real truth’. Now doesn’t that just about nail it for all of us on this side of the grave.
Why do we hide our true feelings and struggles? Why the ‘funny selfies’? Is it because we are trying to appear to be something we want to be, but maybe aren’t. Isn’t this self-defeating? It seems to go against everything in God’s word. It is actually saying; ‘I’m OK, you’re OK’ even when we know it isn’t so. This denial only leads to stress, loneliness and other severe ailments as we try to cover up the truth.
Mental hospitals and prisions are full of people who are dealing with the haunting issues in their lives. It is really tiring to keep changing our masks according to where we are or with whom. Scripture tells us that we are all sinners, far from OK. God’s remedy is so different than the world’s. ‘Selfies’ from God’s perspective are quite different.
Let’s take a look at a couple of verses that will help you deal with that part of your ‘iceberg life’. “Therefore confess your sins to each other, and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” James 5:16 NIV Confess means to ‘agree with’. God knows how much you have fallen, but forgiven sinners need to ‘get it into the open’. Why? Because, then you are no longer under the power of the enemy, Satan. Your conscience is clear. You don’t have to live a false, surface only life. He can’t hold this against you. Confession releases and frees! It may only be between you and God, but sometimes it is helpful to engage a trustworthy accountability partner.
Finally, by doing this, you will receive forgiveness from the One who really matters-God! See the promise that the Lord makes. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” I John 1:9 NIV What might some of these be:
- ongoing greed
- father or mother wounds
- hurts from others
- holding grudges
- past acts of many kinds
Okay, enough; you get the picture.
So, while you’re posting your best images online, how about dealing with the vast part of our life that is under water!
Bill C. Dotson