We find ourselves in a hospital waiting room. One rather self-important individual was getting impatient. Unwilling to wait any longer, he barged in and demanded to be seen by the doctor. "Don't you know who I am?" shouted the man. The secretary calmly pressed the button on the microphone of her loudspeaker system and asked the waiting patients. "I have a gentleman here who doesn't know who he is. Can someone please assist him in finding out? Thank you." Part of growth and maturation is to come to know ourselves better. And in conjunction with that, it is sharing ourselves with others so that they, too, can come to know us better. There is a cognitive psychology tool called the Johari Window. The Johari window is a technique created by Joseph Luft and Harry Ingham in 1955 in the United States. It is used to help people better understand their relationship with self and others. It is used primarily in self-help groups and corporate settings. It consists of a square that is divided into four equal sections. Each section is labeled: Façade, Arena, Blind Spot or Unknown. Other labels are also used. Façade is that which only I myself know. Arena is that which is known by all. Blind Spot is that which is known to others. And Unknown is that which is known to no one. The value of the graph is to increase the “Arena” portion of one’s life – that which is known by all – and decrease the Façade, Blind Spot and the Unknown. The theory is that the more integrated person is one who lives and is known more and more authentically and realistically. Perhaps part of Jesus’ questioning His disciples was to help Him understand if He was getting His message and who He was across to them clearly. Perhaps part of Jesus’ questioning was to help Him lessen the Unknown section of His life. Perhaps part of Jesus’ questioning was to decrease the Blind Spot within Himself. Regardless, the question is still pertinent for us today. Knowing Jesus is no different than any other relationship we have. Time, dialogue, presence and experiencing the other helps us come to know that individual better. Whether it is a spouse, a son or daughter, a friend, a co-worker, or Jesus Himself, the more we know about the other the stronger the relationship can become. And, conversely, we come to know ourselves better. For it is in the mutuality of relationships that our own sense of self is discovered. So, how would you answer the question that Jesus poses today? Is it the same answer you have been using for a number of years? Does your answer help to identify a growth in your relationship and knowledge of Jesus? Are you still “stuck” in your childhood identifications of Jesus?
Or has there been maturity and a greater revelation of who Jesus is for you? The question that Jesus seeks to have an answer is a lifelong one that helps monitor our own growth in knowing Jesus.