Should we accept ourselves?
Yes, say many of today's psychologies. People should accept their human personhood, be reconciled to their human strengths and weaknesses and learn to live with them. This, say these psychologies, is the most honest, most loving thing we can do for ourselves.
At first glance, such an approach seems to have merit. After all, the argument goes, we are what we are, so we might as well try to make the best of it. And the various self- improvement psychologies say they can help us get the most mileage out of ourselves, given our human limitations.
While recognizing his human limitations, however, the true Christian does not fatalistically accept them as the circumference of his being. He recognizes a higher selfhood, a divine sonship with god attainable through the way of Christ Jesus. When accepted, this way of life uplifts and redeems the human self through the power of God, divine Spirit.
This is the true self-improvement that Jesus taught and proved. He did not say, "Accept your human shortcomings and try to be at peace with them." Rather, he said, "Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." n1
n1 Matthew 4:17
Jesus made this demand for repentance -- for thinking and acting changed by the power of God -- because the kingdom of heaven ism at hand. Though we may have only the faintest awareness of it now, heaven is actually inherent withinm each one of us. It's the consciousness of our true identity and relation of God. As the Son of God, Christ Jesus was able to bring to light more vividly than anyone else this hidden (to material sight) identity and relationship -- the real man, who is spiritual and God's beloved son.
Christian Science, the Science of Christ, explains that thism is the selfhood we should accept and come to know. As Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, writes, "The real man being linked by Science to his Maker, mortals need only turn from sin and lose sight of mortal selfhood to find Christ, the real man and his relation to God, and to recognize the divine sonship." n2
n2 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,m p. 316.
Once we glimpse the goodness, the intelligence, the infinitude of the kingdom of heaven within -- our divine sonship -- we can never be content with the bad character traits and mental and physical limitations that make up so much of our present sense of self. Whatever is unlike god, good, is really no part of our true, spiritual nature. Therefore we can, with God's grace, turn from mortal selfhood to find our real identity -- sin-free, loving, infinitely intelligent.
And it doesn't matter how locked in we feel because of heredity, upbringing, or environment. The message of the Christ is that there ism divine power to overcome all sin, defect, and limitation. If we turn to god in earnest prayer, understanding that He does answer right desire, our Father will help us spiritualize our thought and life so that we do recognize and feel more and more of our intrinsic worth as His son. Not only does this make us better morally and spiritually; it also makes us healthier and happier.
What a relief it is to realize we don't have to accept our human selfhood as the parameter ob being! As we accept the Christ into our life and live it, we begin to perceive the infinite possibilities of the kingdom of heaven within -- the consciousness of God, the unlimited Mind, and man, His unlimited manifestation. This is the only selfhood worth accepting! DAILY BIBLE VERSE Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits. Psalms 103:2