This entry is part 10 of 13 in the series How I became a Queer Theologian

The biggest problem with wearing a mask is that as long as we wear it only the mask receives love. The psychology is as simple as it is diabolical, I know that what I am presenting is not real me, therefore I also know that the person you are loving is not really the real me. No matter how sincere your proclamation of love is I will always think that if you knew the real me you would not love me as you do now.

The mask hides our truly sacramental nature with a religious covering. If a sacrament is the outward sign of an inward grace, does not a fake exterior either hide that inward grace (best case scenario) or, worst case, witness of a false interior?

As Christians we talk about “walking in the light” and most often we mean by that, to be truthful and honest, to be open and perhaps transparent. I think we all would want people to see our masks (fine and polished as they are) and marvel at how composed and pure our exterior is.

The trouble is that in the closet there are only shadows and while we can, in the closet, see our own unmasked light, we cannot share it until we come out. And we can only come out by the grace of god. Patrik Cheng writes:

Regardless of how one ultimately comes out, the act of coming out reflects the very nature of a God who is also constantly coming out and revealing Godself to us in the Out Christ. Coming out is a gift that is accompanied by other gifts such as self-love, the love for others, and the overcoming of shame and internalized homophobia. Coming out is not something that can be “willed” or “earned”; it can only happen as an act of grace from God.

From Sin to Amazing Grace: Discovering the Queer Christ by Patrick S. Cheng

So the process of unmasking, of coming out is a sacrament, as it is an outward sign, much like baptism or in TSA enrolment, of an inward grace. The act of becoming oneself, revealing our true nature to the world.
And I think that this coming out process, the process of unmasking or the process of becoming is not a one time deal, it is a lifelong process where we each day choose to affirm and become who we are created to be.
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Series Navigation<< In god’s queer image …The omniamourous god. >>

Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
liene lazdina

I was reading your post and suddenly a thought came to my mind: when we talk about coming “out of the closet”, people usually assume that its gonna be something horrible, bad or unacceptable. But what if its the other way around? I believe that a lot of “mean” people are actually good, gentle and loving! I wonder what would happen if people would understand that “coming out of the closet” is actually a positive thing?! Did all that make any sense? 🙂

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x