Let's Be Friends...
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
As we near the Easter holiday I reflect on the gift of life. I say the gift of life because the Easter celebration brings with it the beautiful season of spring and the new life which blooms all around us during this time of year. The Christian meaning of Easter is Jesus Christ’s victory over death. His resurrection symbolizes the eternal life that is granted to all who believe in Him. Easter is a celebration of renewal and rebirth. The gift is the awareness that Jesus surrendered His life to obtain life. But what does it mean to surrender life for life?
When I was a little girl we had a wall hanging in my home that said the words, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” And although I heard this many times during my catholic school upbringing, I never fully grasped the meaning of these words.
During this journey of Spirit I have come to understand that these words, when reflected upon, simply mean, “Let’s be friends.” This may feel a little confusing. You may be asking, “Be friends? With whom? How? What are you talking about, Nikki?”
The simple answer: Be friends with yourself!
Genesis 1:26 (NKJV) says, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.”
If this is true (which it is) then we ARE as God IS, which means that we are made up of the same three parts of the Holy Trinity. The Father is the spiritual representation of God, the Son is the human representation of God, and the Holy Spirit is the healing representation of God.
If we are made up of these three persons then we, within ourselves, are a trinity, comprised of a spiritual self (God the Father), a human self (God the Son) and a healing self (God the Holy Spirit).
Our faith teaches us that each part of the Holy Trinity is fully God; uniquely, individually, independently and separately. Our faith also teaches us that there is no hierarchy between them: They are all equally God; separate, yet ONE.
Are these three parts of God friends with each other?
Are we friends with ourselves?
Matthew 26:39 (NKJV) says, “He went a little farther and fell on His face, and prayed, saying, ‘O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.”
There are a few elements of this story pertaining to the night before crucifixion that I would like to point out.
First, Jesus went to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray, converse with, connect to and receive guidance from God the Father (the other part of Himself, Jesus’s spiritual self). Since Genesis 26 promises that we are created in the image and likeness of God, then the story Matthew tells of Jesus, teaches us that we too can connect to, communicate with and receive guidance from the other part of ourselves, the spiritual part.
Second, during this conversation with God, Jesus is aware of God’s will as independent to His own, indicating there can be a difference of opinion between the spiritual (God) self and the human (Jesus) self. Does this difference of opinion represent the internal battle within ourselves that we struggle with, the human opinion versus the opinion of our inner voice? Is that internal battle simply a conversation between the human self and the spiritual self?
Third, Jesus surrenders to the will of God and is ultimately crucified, demonstrating a sacrifice of His human self to the will of His spiritual self. Jesus is doing what his spiritual self (God) has asked of Him. This teaches us that we as human beings should surrender to our spiritual self. In other words, do what your inside self says.
This understanding caused me pause because, according the bible, there is no hierarchy between God and Jesus. They are equally God. So why would one surrender to the other if they are both equally God? If there is, in fact, no hierarchy between the God self and the Jesus self then the question becomes… When does God surrender to Jesus?
In John 2:1-11 (NIV), Jesus changes wa