Don't pretend to be something you're not

Don't pretend to be something you're not

The story is told of a zoo that was noted for their great collection of different animals. One day the gorilla died, and to keep up the appearance of a full range of animals, the zookeeper hired a man to wear a gorilla suit and fill in for the dead animal. 

It was his first day on the job, and the man didn’t know how to act like a gorilla very well. As he tried to move convincingly, he got too close to the wall of the enclosure and tripped and fell into the lion exhibit.

He began to scream, convinced his life was over … until the lion spoke to him: “Be quiet, or you’re going to get us both fired.”

So, would you be terribly disappointed if you had planned for weeks, perhaps took time off from work, loaded up the car, and took your family to the zoo only to discover that you were seeing “pretend” animals?  Surely you would be. You and your family would be saddened and the trip to the zoo would not end in the fun you thought it might.

The animals in costume might have gotten away with the charade for a while, but sooner or later, they would mess up and the truth would be known. The guests would feel cheated and hurt. They would lose confidence in those who behaved in such a manner. No one likes to be taken advantage of by another human being, and it hurts when we discover that someone has done so. 

It seems at times that those we trust the most are the ones that hurt us in the deepest ways. 

One such definition of hypocricy says, “Contrivance of a false appearance of virtue or goodness while concealing real character or inclinations with respect to religion and moral beliefs.”

Simple descriptions might include pretender, stage actor, deceiver, liar, pietist, sanctimonious, plaster saint, phony, fraud, sham, and fake.

If we cannot be anything else, let’s be real with each other. None of us make believable gorillas or lions when God made us to be human beings.

Brenda Cannon Henley can be reached at (409) 781-8788 or at  brendacannonhenley [at] yahoo [dot] com.