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Who are you?

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I was running through the neighborhood. Up ahead was a small boy playing by himself in a driveway. He stared at me intently and as I ran by, he called out a question, “Who are you?”   Who am I, indeed. How do you begin to answer a question like that? Am I the set of roles I fulfill? Belief…
By Seth Barnes
drivewayI was running through the neighborhood. Up ahead was a small boy playing by himself in a driveway. He stared at me intently and as I ran by, he called out a question, “Who are you?”
 
Who am I, indeed. How do you begin to answer a question like that? Am I the set of roles I fulfill? Beliefs I hold? Am I the sum of my preferences, interests, and experiences? And what does God think about me (since he thought me up in the first place)?
 
Of course I’m all these things and more. Perhaps the question was surprising for its source ( a small boy), but also because we ask it so rarely of ourselves and one another. We tend to drift through our lives without pausing to really reflect on either who we’ve become or if we’re progressing according to design.
 
Yes, there are things about ourselves we can’t change – our background, our height, our skin color. But so much of who we are is a function of choice. In between the events and sensations we experience and the way we respond is what is known as “liminal space.” It is the place in our lives where we get to exercise our freedom and volitionally answer the question, “Who am I?”
 
When I operate out of habit or without considering alternatives, liminal space may be so small that it is in fact subliminal. And, to the degree that I have little liminal space, my identity may largely be a closed issue. I may live in America, the land of the free, but I may in fact no longer be free.
 
Most of us have far more liminal space available to us than we recognize. People reinvent themselves well into old age. Scoffers become believers and selfish people become considerate.
 
So, who are you?
 
Do yourself a favor and begin reflecting more on the choices you have. Think before you act. Reflect after you act. Journal more. Consider who you’re becoming. Begin living on purpose.

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