Almost everyone wears a mask to cover the real person --- our true inner souls. behind many a smile lies defeat, discouragement and despair. We live in a pretend world. Daily, people practice their smiles in the mirror and go out to live with other masked people. It often seems like no one understands us and our problems, for most everyone we meet seems to live a relaxed life. Finding no one with problems like ours, we cover the lines of guilt and worry, fix our smile up carefully again, and go on back to pretending. From childhood we are taught to be unreal; to look as if we are happy when we aren't; to laugh when we feel like crying; to act as if nothing has happened when we are hurt; to carefully cover the tears and go on with the business of living again.
But it is this kind of automatic deceit that makes it so hard for God to get through to us. He wants to show us what we are. It may take Him a long time, but once He has begun He will complete His work. And He cannot begin to help us until we learn the truth about our old lives; that in US there is "no good thing." (Romans 7:18). Sometimes it takes a person a lifetime to realize that he IS what God says he is without Him -- a SINNER. We always find reasons why we are "better" than the Bible says we are; if we get too good at these, we can simply never be saved.
(Youth Aflame (p175)
Pic by Rasevic (Own work) [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons