Kenny McKinley, of the Denver Broncos, was put on the injured reserves in August for a knee injury and has been recovering since.
In interviews with the McKinley’s coaches and fellow players, they all mentioned how McKinley had an infections smile. Others remarked at how likeable he was.
However, McKinley didn’t believe that himself. On Monday, he allegedly shot himself in his apartment.
I can’t help but think what was going on inside McKinley’s mind (if he was responsible for his own death), whether it was insecurity or depression, that led him to believe his only option out was to end his own life.
How many players did he pass by, and his jovial personality and infectious smile masqueraded a hurting soul?
Our society puts pressure on us to have it together. To perform better. Maximize more. Fail less. So we leave our homes and give ourselves a pep talk as if we were leaving the locker room to “suck it up” and we act like nothing is wrong. We pass people who don’t know our hurts because we’re too ashamed to tell them. We deceive ourselves into thinking everyone else has it together, so why don’t we? We then isolate ourselves and we feel that we can’t show a weakness cause our culture devours those who are weak.
In Biblical community, there are no masks. Weakness is strength. Pain is shared. And the assumption is not everyman for himself.
How many people do you pass each day or talk to who could be hiding behind a facade and masquerading their hurts and pain?
True community places us in relationships where we can see the real person and share in one another’s pain and hurts. Are you wearing the mask? Are you in a community of believers you can trust to see the real you?