I have been captivated by the expression, “It is better to be hated for who you are than loved for who you are not.” According to a study done years ago, nothing is more emotionally destructive than trying to “become.” The person who does not accept who they are will try to become the person they think is required for them to be loved and accepted. This effort represents a total rejection of self! Every effort to become represents a statement to our self that says, I am not good enough!

The only thing more emotionally destructive then being rejected for who you are may be to be accepted for who you are pretending to be. Being accepted for who we pretend to be, for the compromises we make, falsely validates the idea that the person we really are would never be accepted. The constant tormenting thought of those who fall victim to this mind set is, “You wouldn’t love me if you really knew me.” Thus, every approval we receive for the false me becomes a greater rejection of the real me.

Everyday people make moral, emotional, and ethical compromises for acceptance. People step into behaviors everyday to find emotional relief or emotional fulfillment. One of the greatest snares in this lifestyle is the loss of self. Jesus said it like this, “What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?” (Matthew 16:26, TMB) Jesus doesn’t even want us to not be ourselves. Rather, he wants us to die to all of our selfish, self-centered, and destructive ways of trying to be who we are. He wants us to become us-in-Him!