Denying our false self

What  does it mean when Jesus asks us to deny ourselves, take up our cross,  and follow him? I don’t believe Jesus means we should deny our true self, since  the Gospels are full of encouragement and affirmation for being  our authentic self. Jesus affirms this when he says, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

I believe it means we need to deny our  false self, our worldly self, that’s always trying to please the powers,  achieve status, push others aside to have its own way.  Isn’t that just what Jesus did when he denied all the false selves the Devil tempted him with in the Wilderness?

When we are willing to walk the way of the cross–the way of love, of openness, vulnerability, and self sacrifice–we are walking the way of  deep self.  Jesus calls himself “The truly human One,” and when we are  “truly human,” we are touching “Christ in us.”  

Wishing you a Holy Lent, Mother Candace+

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