Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”
“What is truth?” retorted Pilate.
Not to sound all existential at the beginning of a new year, but may I ask a question? I wonder: Do you know who you truly are? Do any of us? At the center of everything, when it comes right down to it, how in touch are each of us with the person God created us to be?
I’m writing this at the start of a brand-new year, and in the year or two that came before this particular new year people have been talking a lot about truth. Truth has been the topic of many of our news cycles, church sermons, podcast episodes, and dinner table conversations. For better or worse, we, like Pilate in his response to Jesus, have been asking, “What is truth?”
At the heart of our wonderings about truth, I believe, perhaps, we might truly be wondering about how truth applies to who we are as people and, specifically, as people doing our darndest to figure out how to know God.
Writer, speaker, and author, Michelle DeRusha wrote the following words in her book, True You: Letting Go of Your False Self to Uncover the Person God Created:
How can I know where I’m going or what I should do if I don’t know who I am? And how do I know who I am if I don’t know who God is? The reason I’m not clear on what to do (my calling) is because I don’t truly know who I am—my authentic self—and the reason I don’t know who I am is because I don’t truly know God in a deep and intimate way. In fact, I don’t know if I know God at all. I don’t know ‘the hope he has called me to’ [Eph. 1:18] because I don’t know him. (81)
What a bold admission DeRusha is making here, right? If, however, I am being honest with myself (and with you), I have asked these same questions from time to time. And, if we are being honest with each other (and if you are honest with you), I imagine you’ve asked similar questions in your lifetime, too.
We each have tried to hide parts of ourselves from ourselves, and from one another. We have even tried to hide them from God. But what if God is not at all surprised by the parts of ourselves we are trying to hide? What if God is giving the side eye to the masks we keep wearing and the trouble we go to to keep them from slipping? As DeRusha reveals in the pages of her magnificent book, God invites us out of hiding and out from behind our masks. Believe it or not, coming out of hiding is the first step to uncovering the truth about who God created us to be and, by extension, the truth about the God of creation.
Something to Do:
Consider using a copy of DeRusha’s book as a guide for beginning this new year. Invite someone close to you to read it with you.
Something to Think About:
From DeRusha’s book: Do you ever feel that God is calling you out of hiding? What parts of your story could you be keeping from yourself and from God? Where are you most comfortable hiding? What might that tell you in terms of identifying your true self?
Abba, Father. Over and over, I keep asking, “What is truth?” because I believe, if I keep asking, you will show me, and I will be set free. Amen.