Life Lesson 33: Since my life is only but a breath, I must first remember to…
Life Lesson 13: I’m a child of the Most High God and my identity is in Jesus Christ.
“ All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes.”
Ephesians 1:3-4 NLT
Not so long ago, I attended a function and was introduced to some folks I was meeting for the first time. After our brief introduction, the very first question I was asked is “What do you do?” That question had me thinking about who I am. Does what I do for a living reflect who I am, or am I created for something more than what meets the eye?
Imagine you are driving along a bumpy road and about every half mile or so you hit a pothole. As you try to negotiate the holes, your car starts to wobble. You pull over to the side of the road to investigate, only to discover that your wheels are actually out of alignment. In the same way, as we travel through life, there will be instability and unsteadiness along the journey that will often force us to slow down or stop. But what if the very thing that you rely on as a sense of security or a sense of self, is the very thing that is out of alignment? Ponder these questions for a moment: Who are you, and what is wrapped up in your identity? Is it your career, your family, your hobby, your education, your finances, how many followers you have on social media, your status, or your notoriety? If you don’t know who you are apart from any of these things, then I’m afraid your identity is lost in the prestige of the world.
As I reflect on the question I was asked about what I do for a living, I wondered if I had told those folks that I am an attorney, a doctor, or a CEO, would they have been impressed with my title and my career? Now, imagine if had I told them that I worked on the other end of the spectrum, in another industry for instance as a blue collar worker, not that anything is wrong with that, but would that change their view of me?
Is your identity a reflection of what you do? If so, what happens after you retire from that profession, or because of unforeseen circumstances you suddenly lose the job you spent your entire life trying to build your identity on? What now? If it’s any encouragement, know that in God’s eyes, we are not defined by what we do. In fact, what matters to God is not what we do for a living, but what we do with His Son Jesus Christ. Indeed, He created each of us for a specific purpose. We each have an assignment to accomplish here on earth, however, we should not let that purpose define who we are. Scripture tells us that “God decided in advance to adopt us into His own family by bringing us to Himself through Jesus Christ. This is what He wanted to do, and it gave Him great pleasure” (Ephesians 1:5 NLT). From this Scripture we can rest assured that our identity is in Christ. The idea that God preordained us to be adopted as daughters and sons through Christ, is remarkable!
Since our identity is wrapped up in the Person of Jesus Christ, we are children of God. When our hearts are focused on Christ, then our identity is not in this material world, but in the Kingdom of God. Once we identify with Christ, we completely surrender our lives to Him and our focus now shifts from career, power, prestige, fame, and fortune to the desires of God, which is to have an intimate relationship with His children. When we truly embrace God’s love for us, we no longer seek after the pleasures of this world, but aim instead to please God by living according to His purpose and plans for our lives. In John 10:10 (NIV), Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” Our satisfaction then should not come from the things of the world, but in the Person of Jesus Christ.
The Bible also tells that, “If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9 NLT). God is not asking much of us, He is only asking that we publicly acknowledge Jesus as the eternal Son of God. Through God’s grace, we are redeemed with the blood of Jesus Christ which cleanses us from all our sins. Romans 6:23 (NLT) said, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” In order to save us, Jesus died to pay our sin debt in full so that we can receive God’s forgiveness and the richness of His grace (Ephesians 1:7), grace we don’t deserve and can never earn.
If you are a follower of Christ, let me urge you, don’t be afraid to publicly identify with Jesus as Lord of your life and stand firm on the truth of God’s Word. If you have never done so, take a moment right now to confess your sins to God. Tell Him you need His forgiveness and ask the Lord to come into your heart. Ask Him to peel away your old self and reveal the righteousness of Jesus Christ (Romans 3:22) so that you are able to confidently and courageously give an answer to anyone who may ask, “Who are you?”
So, who am I? I am not what I do for a living. I am first and forever a child of the Most High God and a follower of Jesus Christ, my Lord and my Savior! May God bless you as you seek Him today.
“Your identity is firmly anchored in Christ’s accomplishment, not yours; His strength, not yours; His performance, not yours; His victory, not yours.”
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