Our true selves?
It is often said that we are our own worst enemy. I do not know if that is what 30 Seconds to Mars was going for in their song “The Kill” but it seems to be a theme. Take a minute and appreciate the song in all of its music video glory.
I have to say that I encountered this song with new ears during Holy Week as a rather desperate plea forms the basis of the chorus: “Come! Break me down! Bury me, bury me!” The tensions in the video (seriously, watch the video) also seem to speak to the challenge for the Christian to become a new creation in Christ. The work of the doubles in the music video is really rather impressive, especially in light of the assertion “THIS is who I really am!”
The song begins in a place of desperation, a place of giving up. More and more, I am realizing at how easy it is to reach a point of being at the end of myself. What interests me is the way this song conveys a hopefulness even amidst some really tough claims of being human because the plea of the chorus is other-directed. This other invites transformation, even as we struggle.
A really tough thing about living in Christ is that we seek God’s help in freeing us from our old body of death. Yet, the boundaries between the old and new man are not as clear as one might hope. It is tempting to try to put on the right clothes of appearance, look clean and shiny, and call this scrubbed version of ourselves “the new man.” But do we find our true selves through radical identification and love with our humanity? I have no idea. Somewhere deep within each and every person lies an image of our amazing God, obscured by layers and layers and layers (and layers and layers and layers….) of grime, dirt, decay, sin and death. But merely scrubbing the top layer doesn’t seem to be the solution.
And do I dare cry “COME! BREAK ME DOWN!!!” to Christ Himself???
It only makes sense if I can trust Him to raise me up again.