The Man Behind the Curtain
I remember watching the Wizard of Oz when I was growing up. Side note: who didn’t think that those blue flying monkeys were the creepiest things ever? Leaving out the monkeys though, there were many great elements to that story, which is why it’s a classic. Great music. Believable and infectious characters. Memorable and quotable lines. “There’s no place like home!”
But there’s one part that sticks out to me and for the longest time I have been thinking about it.
Towards the end of the movie when the Wizard refuses to grant Dorothy her wish, Dorothy and her friends discover who the real man is behind the theatrics of the Wizard. When the curtain is pulled back, Dorothy and all the rest see the Wizard for who he truly is. The Wizard isn’t a giant spirit-like floating head wreathed in flames; he’s a short, old man who had been tricking all of the people of Oz into believing he was something that he really wasn’t.
When the Wizard’s charade is at risk of being exposed he adamantly tells them, “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. I am the Great Wizard of Oz!”
And he sounds like a lot of us today.
We say things like:
“Don’t look too closely at my humanity because I’m doing my very best to cover up all of my mistakes.”
“Don’t look behind my charade to see who I truly am when I think no one’s watching.”
“Don’t ask the tough questions that will make me realize that I can’t keep hiding my shame and sin and guilt any more.”
We don’t have to put up false fronts that hide who we truly are. It can be so tempting to throw up a curtain or two when I sense something might be potentially damaging to my ego and Christian pride. I put on a lot of theatrics and distractions, hoping to divert people’s attention away from who I really am. Yes, that’s right, stay focused on the eye service and over-spiritual fronts that I use as diversion techniques…and pay no attention to who I really am behind the curtain of reality.
How much effort do I, like the Wizard, put into staying behind the curtain? It’s time to stop the charade and quit putting curtains up around us. Be who God has called you to be and embrace the life you’ve been given, warts and all. Use the humanity and mistakes that God allows you to experience as springboards for sharing His work in your life.