“What is Authenticity?”
The first entry from the Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “of undisputed origin; genuine.” The second entry from Oxford is even more illuminating: “[something] made or done in the traditional or original way, or in a way that faithfully resembles an original.” This begs the question, “To what original are we to compare ourselves to?”
The Book of Genesis reminds us that: God created mankind in his image; in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. – Genesis 1:27
God creates everything. The light He separates from the darkness, He creates the heavens and the earth, the birds and the plants, seas and rivers. Yet it is us, mankind, that He graces with His image and likeness. We also know from the First Letter of John that “God is love.”
He creates and sustains all things as Father, and all of Creation reflects back to God the personal fingerprint of His presence in us. Authenticity as human beings means allowing ourselves, through freedom, to echo back that love as perfectly as possible.
Finally, I encourage you to pray with this next passage from Saint Paul, and everywhere that “love” or “it” appears, replace it with your name. Listen to yourself speak and examine which phrases are most difficult to hear.
I pray this will help you learn where you need to be more authentically you.
Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, [love] is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a