It seems like it’s often just assumed we should want to be who we were when we came out of our mother’s womb.
In other words, the idea that so often goes unquestioned, is that there’s this true, authentic self that is just who we are at the core that then somehow gets covered up by our cultures and other people’s opinions and desires for us that we must courageously seek to uncover and live out if we are going to be truly free and enjoy life as we are meant to enjoy it.
But, for me, whenever people talk like that I always think, why would ever want to be that person?
If you want to know my true, authentic self left to itself without any outside influences, it is not that different than any other person’s true, authentic selves. Oh, some of the quirks and particular tendencies may be different, but not the main drive, which was self. I came out of the womb with an intense longing to be the center of the world. And I was willing to do pretty much whatever it takes to get people to submit to my desire for that.
The truth is I don’t want to be that guy. I look back on who I was and there’s no way that I would want to go there. I want someone to save me from my authentic self, and of course, the good news of the gospel is that someone has come to do just that.
Not only did Jesus come so that I could be forgiven of my original sin, He also died to purchase the Spirit for me, who is in the process of helping me become less and less of who I was and more and more of who God designed me to actually be. What’s ironic of course, is that if I listened to the world and just let go and gave into all the sinful tendencies I entered the world with, I would find not freedom but slavery; and yet by submitting to Christ’s lordship over my life and working with the Spirit of God to obey His commands and become the person He wants me to be, I find just the opposite, this is where I find true freedom and life and peace.