about / choosing joy

Put on Your Game Face: What Do You Show to the World?

Today as I was going through pictures, making a 2008 photobook over at Shutterfly, I came across these beauts. My family and I went to a 49ers game last year, and we got these stickers to use so we could put on our “Game Face.” My family went crazy … posing for a ton of silly photos. I’m only sharing mine here, and only because I love you guys. Honestly, this first one makes me laugh EVERY time I see it (OK, they both make me laugh).

These photos made me think a little about the Game Faces each of us put on every day. I know at work I put on a different Face than I do with my family, or my college friends. Most of the time, I try not to show that I’m angry or irritated with something. I know that at the heart of the matter, I’m pretty easy to read and wish that at work I could disguise my feelings better.

I think a lot about how a Game Face can also be a Brave Game Face. I know that lots of us pretend nothing is wrong, everything is fine, regardless of that being the truth. For some reason, society wants us to have a Brave Game Face and not ask for help or admit if we are hurting. That tends to be something that can make us feel lonely, sad, alienated, because we can’t show our Real Face.

I think that’s because we’re all afraid. Or least I am. Of being not good enough, of being judged, of not meeting expectations. Of seeming weak. Of coming across as stupid.

In the past few years, though, I’ve worked hard to face things with love. The love of knowing the true person in each of us is valuable, perfect, and wonderful. Each of us is here for a reason, has a purpose in this life. Instead of being afraid of things, I now try to meet things with love, respect, and gratitude.

My heart took flight this evening when I was reminded of this passage by the blog Shrinking the Camel: “God’s grace is sufficient for me. His strength is made perfect in my weakness.”

His strength is made perfect in my weakness. What a concept. I can be broken, messy, goofy, ridiculous, AFRAID. And it is all OK, because there is a perfect match for those weaknesses in God. God and His Grace can even it out. This makes me want to dance, hug, twirl, giggle all in one movement. It truly makes me giddy. Talk about feeling strong.

Looking at these photos again, what I love is that they are a glimpse of my Real Face. This is who I am with my family, my close friends, those people who I love the most. The irony is that here my Game Face is mirroring what is Real and True inside. Apologetically silly. Unconcerned about multiple chins or fly away hair. I am just being me and loving the moment. It’s my hope that I can remember to let down the Brave Game Face, and just be the real me more. Because it’s who I am supposed to be, and there is love and strength in that.