If you know who you are you have nothing to prove!
Above — a photo of my 15-year-old self making a protest
Our contemplative group has been contemplating the ‘Temptations of Christ’ over this last fortnight. Often as I ponder on the reading I get something that I may share back when we meet. This time as we waited in the silence I found myself thinking of a time when I was tempted to be someone other than myself.
In the temptations of Christ, the devil tempts him three times. At the source of each temptation is a provocation for Jesus to prove who he was, he didn't succumb to the need.
Strangely I was brought back to when I was 13 years old. I had been a fairly innocent kid although I was brought up at a time when Northern Ireland was experiencing much strife. I recalled feeling around 12 years old that I wasn't as tough as I was expected to be. As often is the case a certain set of circumstances are created and I decided to leave what was a Christian environment and prove that I could be as troublesome as any other. Unfortunately, that meant that I entered the conflict of Northern Ireland and became politically active. It lasted for about 4 years enough time for me to see that it wasn't really me (another set of circumstances unfolded).
I once again was in a vacuum however within the year I found my way back to God. In that and my life thereafter I learned that if you know who you are you have nothing to prove.