This is a word that I’ve feared for a long time and something that the Lord has been so graciously been walking me through for awhile now. For as long as I can remember, it’s been my fleshly tendency to ignore it and continue to place my identity in fleeting things and things that aren’t of Him.
My entire life thus far, I’ve firmly placed my identity in other people and who they say I am. It’s left me feeling unworthy. Unwanted. Unseen. Unheard. If you’ve ever been in the same boat as me, I’m sure you know the feeling. It’s immensely painful. Last night, I posted this Instagram post:
This was after two instances back-to-back where the people around me failed to love me. It crushed me simply because in that moment, I placed my identity in what they thought of me rather than what God thinks of me. He was graciously quick to remind me that He is well pleased with me and He delights magnificently in me despite what others may think or say.
The way that I lived my teenage years was searching desperately for people and things to fill the void that I had in my heart. I placed my identity in what others thought of me; I was convinced that was others thought of me must have been who I am. Hint: that was a lie.
The more I place my identity first and foremost in God, the more I feel cherished. The more I feel magnificently delighted in. The more I feel loved. The more I feel seen and heard. The more I placed my identity first and foremost in God, the less I feel unwanted. The less I feel undesired. The less I feel unimportant.
If you struggle with an identity crisis as I do, let me tell you something: your identity first and foremost is a son or daughter of the living God. He’s asking you the same thing He asked me last night, “son, daughter, why am I not enough?”
When you don’t feel delighted in by those around you, rest perfectly in the fact that you are so delighted in by the King of the universe. The same God who created the galaxies and the stars and flowers and every living, breathing, beautiful thing delights in you as if you’re His only creation. There are eight billion people alive and He loves you as if you’re the only one; that is the God that your identity is placed in. Now that is something that we can rejoice about.
My identity used to be in:
My identity is now in:
The love He has for me.
His unfleeting joy.
1 Corinthians 6:9-20 says “… do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” I love this verse for 3 reasons. One, because it declares that our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, meaning that He dwells within us. Temples in the Bible were designed carefully, beautifully, and artistically, which is a the epitome of His creation of us.
“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well.” / Psalm 139:14
Second, this verse states that we are bought with a price, the price being Jesus’ own life as a ransom. John Piper beautifully states “The greatest news in all the world is that the Son of God has paid the price of my condemnation. The gospel of Jesus Christ, that God offers to everyone who will believe, is that the death of Jesus, his Son, is the payment for our sin and our guilt and our condemnation.” That right there is our identity. The third reason I love that verse is because it commands us to glorify God in our bodies. This doesn’t mean simply outwardly, but inwardly. This means to glorify Him in our minds, thoughts, hearts, and physical bodies. When we place our full identity in Him, we begin to naturally glorify Him in all of who we are.
“Christian self-hood is not defined in terms of who we are in and of ourselves. It’s defined in terms of what God does to us and the relationship he creates with us and the destiny he appoints for us. God made us who we are so we could make known who he is. Our identity is for the sake of making known his identity.”
When our identities are placed in God, they can never be shaken. You are who He says you are and that alone is enough. So, who does God say you are? Tackle the lies that the enemy says you are with the triumphant truth of God. He is your creator meaning that He knows you best meaning that His opinion of you is the only one that matters. Once you fully embrace the identity of your Creator (God), you are then able to embrace the identity of His creation (you). How are you embracing His identity and in turn embracing your own?
“See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands.” / Isaiah 49:16