Thursday, March 30, 2017

Who Am I?

Jesus was true God and true man, but it seems when we think on that fact we often are confused.  How can He be two beings at once?  And then we often dismiss that question with our quick-to-mind all-encompassing answer regarding God issues:  He is a mystery.  That’s a true answer, sure, since we can never totally understand God, but it’s also a cop-out, and a dismissal of the subsequent question which we really cannot dismiss.  We know (but not understand) who He is, but:  Who Am I?
My experience is that many of us were “made” by the people in our lives.  From our parents to teachers to friends and family, we were formed by our interactions with others.  We learned.  We considered.  And we acted based on how our minds were formed.  “That’s who I am,” we sometimes say in justifying our recent words or actions. 
Every man is free, having received his liberty from God; therefore, he has the right to govern himself according to his own judgment and personal views.  – Divine Intimacy P346
Yet despite this freedom to govern ourselves, Jesus said: “If any man would come after Me, let him deny himself.  – Mt 16:24.
But in this freedom:  Who am I?  We are more than just our free physical actions, and we are more than mere reflections of the men who influenced us.  As we so often forget, in our lives there is God, too.  He created us --- and what greater influence on us could there be than that?  And most importantly, Jesus came to show us and tell us that God continually influences us; He interacts with us through our spiritual lives.  He said: “I will send you My Spirit,” to be with you always.
We seem confused how Jesus can be true God and true man, but in a very real way, we too are both spiritual and physical beings.  Do we take the time to understand this about ourselves? 
Jesus died to open the gates of heaven, and He gave us the Holy Spirit as a path to it.  The doors of heaven are open, but (and here Jesus would strongly agree with the oft-stressed words of our culture), “we are free to choose.”  But the door to heaven isn’t a mystery like the game show which asked: “Do you want what’s behind door number 1, or door number 2 or door number 3?”  Jesus lived and spoke and gave us the gifts of His Holy Spirit to help us see what is behind the door of heaven --- and it’s more than we could ever imagine.
We just have to choose.
But how do we do that?  Now you might say that: “Well, I prayed for God’s blessings or even for the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, but nothing happened.”  Remember, you are both spiritual and physical beings.  How did the physical side of who you are now come about?  Did your mom give birth and then set you on the doorstep and say: “Well, there’s the world, go out and get an education, a good job, find a good spouse and have a good life.  See yah!”  No, of course not; all those things which lead to a good physical life came about because others’ help, helping us to grow into that good person, able to lead that good physical life.  So why would you think that a good spiritual life --- such a more important life --- would come about easier, faster than your physical growth?
Just as a baby’s first words start the communication path which will support its physical growth, so our first prayers will start the conversation to bring about our spiritual growth.  And at some point, just like in that math class with all its goofy formulas when we said: “Aha!  I see it now!”  So at some point we will say in our prayers: “Aha!  I see You now!”  And we will know Him, His love, and will desire to do ANYTHING to be with Him, always.  And He will lead us home.
Our spiritual life starts with a simple: “I trust in You” prayer, and over time it ends with a sincere “I trust in You” conviction.  It takes time for us to grow, physically or spiritually.  It takes effort.  It takes dedication.  But the results will make us who we were created to be.
And then we shall truly know the answer to that most important question of who we are.      

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