We are so quick to think we know someone by the way they dress, how they treat their children, how they interact with others. But like an iceberg, we are only seeing a small part of what is actually there. The hidden things, those things that they don't share with others or choose to hide all for the sake of appearances.
Like my children reminded me as I was discussing this very thought with Sean - "Man looks at the outside, but God looks at the heart". The problem is that we have become experts at hiding. We hide our true feelings out of fear of being hurt. We don't say what we think for fear of rejection. We might think we are being transparent when we bravely confess our weaknesses but really we're not confessing anything at all.
I know that there are many things that I am prepared to talk about, and yet there are those things that I consider 'the untouchables' - . those things between God and myself. Yet the times I have felt the unction to confess these weaknesses or sins, it has opened up a door of freedom for myself and for those listening because everyone is scared of being honest about who they really are. And as I do I discover friendships that will pray and support; I discover God's grace, mercy and healing and I discover the platform for others to open up and be true to others and themselves.
Are you trying hard to look like you are not struggling because your husband is in ministry. How can you possibly allow others to really see the truth? Better to keep a brave face, a big smile and say very little to anyone.
Have you lost hope because you've just discovered your teenage son is involved in pornography but are too ashamed to tell anyone?
Has your husband let you down? You married a man who you thought shared a passion for God and yet, years later he is consumed with making money and has no time for God. He's at all the meetings, says the right things but you know the truth.
Are you so in debt but you want to maintain appearances. Others might know you are struggling but not how badly. You spend when you don't have but you can't seem to help yourself and now because of this you can't afford to pay your rent or your children's school fees.
You've lost the inclination to be intimate with your husband and you now suspect that he might be looking around? And in fact you think that it might be better to get a divorce because life was so much easier before marriage and children.
Are you drowning in housework, homeschooling and children? All day you read blogs about those "together" families and feel like such a failure. Your husband doesn't know what chaos actually exists when he is at work all day and you're too afraid to ask anyone for help.
So many things that we can hide - all for the sake of appearances and what others will think. And yet I know that as we talk about these things, there is an opportunity for others to step in and support you. You don't have to struggle with this alone. People who count, will not laugh or ridicule you, they will want to be there for you. You might need to accept some honesty and even correction but if they are really interested in your future and destiny, they will help you to make the adjustments. They will not leave you to flounder as you drown. God is offering you a life rope through the people He surrounds you with - why not take a chance?