Thinking some more
about what it means to be known by God.
Will that not be about shedding our false identity,
the identity that is a persona which we show to the world
that is not bad in itself, but not who we really are either.
To be be known is to experience the excavation
of our true self, to be given who we truly are.
That's not easy, or always comfortable -
because it's also about learning the truth
about who we are, in a negative way,
identifying the shadow self we each have
for what it is, a cuckoo in the souls nest.
What does Jesus have to say about that self?
Then Jesus told his disciples,
“If any want to become my followers,
let them deny themselves and take up their cross
and follow me.
For those who want to save their life will lose it,
and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.
To travel into God's knowing us
will strip away what isn't really who we are:
we lose that in order to find
who we truly are.
I don't see how it can be any other way
if we are to receive the kind of love
we are loved with.
Thomas Merton gives a brilliant description
of what that love is like,
untainted by the devices and desires
of our shadow selves:
The Lord is present where the new day shines
in the moisture of the young grasses.
The Lord is present where the small wildflowers
are known to him alone.
The Lord God suddenly passes in the wind,
at the moment when night ebbs into the ground.
He who is infinitely great has given His children
a share in His own innocence.
He alone is the gentlest of loves:
whose pure flame respects all things.
God, who owns all things,
leaves them to themselves.
He never takes them for His own,
the way we take them for our own
and destroy them.
He leaves them to themselves.
He keeps giving to them, giving them all they are,
asking no thanks of them
save that they should receive from Him
and be loved and nurtured by Him,
and that they should increase and multiply,
and so praise him.
He saw that all things were beautiful
and he did not want them.
His love is not like ours.
His love is unpossessive.His love is pure because it needs nothing.