Monday, August 5, 2013

What do you want to be... no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives

We have a habit of asking kids & teens, "What do you want to be when you grow up?"
I'd like to hear one say, "Do you mean what do I want to do? Because I still want to be me when I grow up."
We're apt to take our identity from so many things:  our jobs, our hobbies, the entertainment we enjoy, our religious affiliation, our spiritual beliefs, our political beliefs, & even our family & friends. A lot of this comes from insecurity or fear.

We are given artificial flavorings, artificial identity. It is meant to imitate the natural but it is not natural. The world just sorta makes us fall in place that way.

You can't be content until you are willing to be yourself without fear. But people will either love you for who you are, hate you for who you are, or not care about you, not care about the real you. They'll hate you because you refuse to take your identity from what they take their identity from. They'll stop caring about you because you refuse to be afraid of them & their opinion, no longer needing their approval. Those who love you for who you are are the hardest to find.

While you could say young adults & teens are selfish the ultimate truth is that most adults don't end up being selfish. They end up having a type of "team" mentality. They give up their identity for an affiliation or role within business, religion, family, or any paradigm. The mentality is, "I'm gonna let this thing tell me who I am" or even worse, "Who I am not & thus who I should be. I'm not who I should be so I need this system to tell me who I should try to become." Obviously that's religion & marketing 101. Tell people they are missing something & then offer them a way to get what they are missing. Systems get people to work for them or buy from them. They exist to take & not to give, they are artificial flavors & they've got just enough preservatives for you to not blame them.

The difference between me seeing myself as "a dad" or "Melody's dad" is colossal. You can be a parent & forever leave your kids in the dark because you are trying to be "a parent," you're trying to fit the role, meet the cliches, meet others expectations, fall within the grace of others' opinions & the acceptable norms. Doing this sets you up as someone who's goal is to control & manipulate your child instead of know your child. And it is no wonder because doing things like this sets you up as someone who's goal is to control & manipulate yourself instead of know yourself.

So the question "What do you want to be when you grow up?" implies "I stopped being me & became this thing," & "what you are now has to go."

This all relates to the idea of being "in" the world but not "of" the world. Being of the world means you take or strive to take your identity from it. And let me tell you, the religion of Christianity is perhaps the most "worldly" thing in existence. It is the ultimate bait-and-switch.

Jesus saying, "Whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it" refers to our false life, that which was given to us by the world to strive to keep or improve. I claim this because Jesus immediately went on to say, "What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self?" Think about His question.

Whoever wants to save their world-made-life will lose it. It will be destroyed because God will not keep that false life for us. Whoever abandons the world-made-life for Jesus, The Life who gives the God-made-life, will save their true life. The world-made-life "seeks to conform you into its image" until you are no longer you. The God-made-life seeks to renew you. When you are renewed you know God's desire has been to give you abundant life, abundant real life with no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.

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