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The Idealized Self Image and Salvation

The Idealized Self-Image and Salvation: Each of us has an idealized self-image of ourselves.  I come from a family where most perceived themselves as special, bigger than life.  Nevertheless, all but two are dead now so looking back, as life progressed and reality overtook each of them, in most instances, I perceive them as having been “less than average.”

Unlike the cat’s idealized image in the picture, our idealized image is usually not totally out of reach. Sometimes we have ample potentiality in a few directions.  Even so, to be reality, potentialities need to be raised to a level of “accomplished fact.”So an idealized self-image is usually not totally fictitious. It is a wishful thinking, imaginative creation combined with various realistic factors.

You who are not yet born again will find that true conversion is the ultimate challenge to your idealized self-image.  For if you are as I was, a person who felt significant, superior, and in harmony with my family’s perspective of we being “special people,” the Holy Spirit is going to confront your idealized self-image and shatter it.

When the super confident repent, they’re not able to raise even the smallest excuse or defense on the basis of their delusional embrace of their own arrogance. For them to be humbled, they must be brought low where the truth of who they REALLY are is shown to be an abomination in the eyes of God. 

We see a few people in the bible whose idealized self image and salvation were in conflict with each other:  old testament and new testament Saul, aka the Apostle Paul.  These full of pride types have to be brought low and broken to be saved–at times, physically brought to their knees.For those trained to be passive and inferior, you traditionally rate yourself better than others also because of your false humility. Your low self-esteem you blame on others because you notice that your value rises and falls based upon the approval or disapproval of others, their affection or lack thereof.  Your aggressive tendencies have been so repressed, that deep down, you are a bottle of rage about to explode.

Both groups are brought to the same conclusion.  Without the Lord Jesus, you can do nothing.  You can’t please God either way.

Written by Pam Sheppard

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