Two quotes from the amazing and inspiring Thomas Merton:
The real aim of all spiritual growth is to become your true self.
Someday, you’re going to have to learn to stand up for your self.
I have decided that as a creature of God, the best way I can bring honour to the Creator is to be my created self: just as I was created – scars, quirks, darkness and light. Not everyone’s going to like that and there are times when the broiling froth of life, and of others’ opinions, will try to overwhelm that true self. When I will be tempted to be silent, or to conform, or to hide behind my wallflower status. There are times when I will be tempted to be something other than who I truly am. For convenience, perhaps, or for safety, or – probably more pertinently, because there are times when I don’t actually like who I am. But it turns out, I have to be my true self anyway. I have to stand up for myself. I have to stand up for my Self.
It is my responsibility to be who I am so that I can be known by God. It is my responsibility to take the masks off – then I can be seen. Then – and possibly, only then – I can stand face-to-face with God.