Over the holidays I saw a young man who I had known as a child. In his late twenties, he was established in his career and had an easy confidence in being Himself. But there is a greater comfort to be had than having a successful career. There is the comfort to be had in being who you really are. If you have found yourself in both you are blessed. If there is only one self and that is the self you have made from externalities then not so much.
As I have already stated in these posts, there is a false self and a real self. We can live a life in religion or out of it that is our attempted construction of our identity. But we will not begin to live out of real self and become who we really are until we cease the manufacture of self through performance or religion and invite Jesus to be who we are. This is the new birth and the change from the first part of life to the second. Some folks get this early on and other not until a few days before they die. But any of us can have it all our lives if we are perceptive enough to walk the narrow way rather than the wide way.
‘No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other’ LUKE 16.13 NIV.
Jesus said, ‘You can only have one Master.’ The issue is – Is your identity in Christ more important to you than you identity in anything else? This is the issue we all need to face. We must face it because the Christ we have made or had handed to us may not be the Christ of God or the Jesus who is the I AM of Himself. If He is the product of our ideas rather than who He is we cannot know God or ourselves and we will spend our lives promoting a gospel that is no gospel at all along with the kingdom that is a paddock of tares. So do we want the Christ of God or our self-made false christ?
“The price of Jesus Christ, as C. S. Lewis says, is to want him. The price of wanting him is willingness to have our minds converted. For we cannot know Jesus—and thus experience the sheer life and freedom that only such knowing produces—if we are projecting our own preconceptions upon him. In such a case, it is not the real Jesus that we know at all, but a figment of our own imaginations. Such a Jesus will forever fail to deliver the life we seek, as surely as a fake pearl would have failed to take the merchant’s breath away. And such a Jesus leaves us with ourselves to manufacture the kingdom, which leaves us with a kingdom that is no more than we can create. We must be willing to bear the pain of grinding out a better prescription for our glasses. To refuse to do so, to call a halt to the process and leave our habits of mind unexamined, is to run the risk of missing Jesus Christ altogether and dooming ourselves to a life, a kingdom, a salvation of our own making.” (1)
(1) Kruger, C. Baxter. Jesus and the Undoing of Adam . Perichoresis Press. Kindle Edition.