The Lord hears the cry of the poor. When the armistice with self-hatred is signed and we embrace what we really are, the process of liberation begins. But so often we we are afraid to do so because of the fear of rejection. Like Quasimodo, the hunchback of Notre Dame who thought he was hideous, we daub cosmetics and spiritual makeup on our misery and supposed to ugliness to make ourselves appear presentable to God. This is not our true self. Authentic prayer calls us to rigorous honesty, to come out of hiding, to quit trying to seem impressive, to acknowledge our total dependence on God and the reality of our sinful situation. It is a moment of truth when defenses fall and the masks drop in an instinctive act of humility.