As someone who's "been there/done that" let me just say this to all of you who struggle and fight to hide pieces of yourself away because of the dirtiness and sin that comes to all of us throughout our lives:That reminds me of something I read once... where is it? Oh, yes: ...if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
What is done to you by others - and what it then causes you to do (either to yourself or to others) - is not who you are.
IT. IS. NOT. WHO. YOU. ARE.
Not if, or but, or perhaps, or maybe, or if you're real good and eat all your vegetables; just a simple, flat statement. And what is being in Christ?
All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. ... We beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19, 21)
It is not who I am because Christ made Himself that way in my stead. He let others do to Him what they wanted to do to me. He alone could withstand it, and rise again. I can be myself only when I am completely immersed in, entangled with, and given over entirely to Him.
Oh, yeah, I remember ...
That is how we help each other sometimes, I think. It's not so much that we're telling anyone something new. It's that we're reminding our friends of what satan would have us forget - the beautiful truths we knew all along.
Thank you, Jules!