My husband has been reading one of my favorite books to the kids. Its called Tales of the Kingdom. I highly recommend this particular edition of the book for the amazing pictures that help tell the story. Honestly the story wouldn't be the same without them in my opinion. Its an amazing allegory about the Kingdom of Heaven. I received it as a child and have loved it ever since.
In this book everyone has a Name that is given to them when they enter the Kingdom. The Name is for your true self, who you were created to be. Sometimes the name doesn't seem to make sense to the bearer, in fact it seems to the complete opposite of who the person is. For example, Princess Amanda who is by all appearances a tomboy and anything but a princess. Without going into too much detail, in case you want to buy the wonderful book, there is a process that every character has to go through to make their true self known. Its known as Becoming Real.
I was listening to my husband read tonight as one of the main characters begins to take the meaning of his Name to heart and become who he was meant to be. It got me thinking. Even though we don't actually receive a new name when we enter the God's Kingdom we do receive a new identity in Him. It takes a while to become who God intended us to be. In fact we never fully get there here on earth but a change does begin to take place.
So what is that new identity? Who is it that we are supposed to become? Or maybe even how do we find out? I can't say I really know any of those answers but I think we need to pursue them. God loves us too much to leave us as he finds us. This is beautifully illustrated in the book. People come to the Kingdom and are treated with respect and love. Even those that have never experienced love before, and more importantly, those who don't who don't want it at first. In a book its easy to see a person's journey to their real self. Its a lot harder to navigate it in life, on your own, without seeing the plot points. And in the book they are sequestered in a safe place for a time to learn who they are.
In the real world that we live in we have to face the fact that when we decide to follow God we are in the same circumstances that we were before. We have the same life, the same problems and the same sinful desires haunting us. Its harder to Become Real when you aren't so protected. But the process is there if we reach for it. There is Someone willing to walk you through the flames of your life and help you come out the other side as you were meant to be. (Yes, subtle spoiler but if you haven't read it you'll still be clueless)
It all makes me wonder. Who am I? Who was I made to be? What am I missing by stubbornly clinging to my old life? Am I being like Dirty, the main character in one of my favorite stories from the book? Am I clinging onto my old self because I terrified to be loved in the way that God wants to love me? While I don't know the answers to the first few questions I have to say yes to the last few. Its scary to let go and walk toward that new life, that Real me that I'm supposed to be.
How do I Become Real? I'm not sure but I know I want to and that I need to.