We are who we are. If we try to be somebody else we are in trouble.
The story of Jacob and Esau in the Old Testament is such a troubling story. Jacob and Esau were twins. Their mother Rebekah was fond of Jacob while their father Isaac was partial to Esau.
Esau was born first, and it seems that didn’t sit well with either Esau or Jacob. Jacob wanted to be the firstborn. Esau on the other hand could not have cared less. Why did it matter so much that he was born first? Everything seemed to hinge on the birthright. Esau was tired and sick of this. And so he despised his birthright while Jacob desired it.
On his deathbed their father Isaac asked both of his boys a simple question: “Who are you?” Apparently the question is not so simple after all. It took a lifetime for Esau and Jacob to come up with the correct answer.
Through preferential treatment, Rebekah and Isaac unwittingly caused a serious rift in their family. Later in life Esau and Jacob were able to come to terms and reconcile. In order to make peace with one another they both had to own up to their mistakes.
It’s almost like a rite of passage when people first own up to their mistakes. A boy becomes a man and a girl becomes a woman that way. We no longer hide behind our parents’ faults or anybody else’s faults and humbly accept the consequences. We are who we are. Or to put it in God’s words: “I am who I am.” God Himself is not pretentious. He is who He is. We can learn from Him.
We have a lifetime to learn two things: understand who we are and then be true to ourselves. What if we get rejected? Welcome to God’s world – God became a human being and walked into the world that He previously created and His own people did not welcome Him. I believe He can empathize with us when we face rejection.
It’s a golden moment in time when we first realize that God loves us. Accepting God’s love and accepting ourselves goes hand in hand. God loves us – and by the way: that’s who we are.