Please Excuse Me While I Have an Existential Crisis

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

"Christina Bohn is"


Writing a short autobiography should be an easy task. After all, who knows me better than myself? Yet, these three little words made me feel like hyperventilating a few weeks ago. Friends, it's been a long time since such a simple little clause has caused me this much anxiety. The last time was when the doctor said, "I'm going to insert this in..." before trailing off as she consulted her notes (true story).

This little predicate made me stare at my computer screen for what felt like hours as I tried to figure out what came next. How am I going to complete this sentence? Will what follows be...

Impressive enough?
Interesting enough?
Loveable enough?
Just... enough?

What do you want from me, people?

The laughable thing is that this short autobiography I'm supposed to write is for the back of a commentary that NO ONE will read. Not even my own mom will read it. I can't decide if this should make me feel better or worse.

This writing exercise awoke an existential crisis I didn't even know was brewing inside me. All of a sudden, I was wondering, "Who am I?"

I've always wondered whether Jesus had an existential crisis at any point in his life. I mean, there really isn't a precedent for someone who is both fully God and fully human. There's a reason why the deity/humanity of Jesus is talked about so much in scholarly circles - it doesn't get more confusing than that.

If at any point Jesus did have doubts about his true identity, however, they were quickly cleared up at the very beginning of his ministry. As he was coming up out of the waters of baptism, Jesus' Father said, "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased."

This right here is the truest thing about Jesus: He is God's Son, he is loved, he is in a favorable relationship with the Godhead. Here's the thing that gets me: Jesus hasn't even done anything yet! There haven't been any miracles, any teachings, any prophesies... Jesus didn't have to do anything impressive to earn his Father's love.

Jesus was enough, just for showing up. It's like that one class we all took where we just had to show up for attendance to receive full class credit. Jesus was the Beloved -- no prerequisites, no expectations. End of autobiographical sentence.

If God loved Jesus this much but still chose to send Jesus to die for you, how much do you think God loves YOU?

Let that sink in.

Henri Noewen writes that "self-restriction is the greatest enemy of the spiritual life because it contradicts the sacred voice that calls us 'Beloved.'"*

You are not identifiable by your successes, your power, your popularity, or your influence. You are the beloved. You are enough, just for being present.

You are enough for who you are and whose you are.

That is the truest thing about you.

Now finish this sentence: [Your name] is...

* Life of the Beloved, pg. 21

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