Identity. Where does our identity come from?
Our cultures work very hard to create a box for us to live in based on our connections. We are defined and identified by our families, our income, our race, our gender, our education, our beauty (or lack thereof), our talent, our nationality, our religious affiliation and even our career. We are defined and identified by the products we purchase and by the forms of entertainment we enjoy. We are categorized by everything from computing platform choice to musical genres and even if we would prefer a paper or plastic bag to carry our groceries in.
Is this type of identification valid? It is important? Can these things really tell us who we are?
Life can be defined by connections. Who are we connected to? Where are we from? Where have we been? Where did we learn? Where have we worked? Who do we know?
In the most basic, real and spiritual sense our lives are definitely defined by our connections.
Are we connected to the Lord Jesus Christ?
In this new life, it doesn’t matter if you are a Jew or a Gentile, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbaric, uncivilized, slave, or free. Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us. (Colossians 3:11 NLT)
Some reading this are very happy with their connections, both past and present. Some reading this have mixed emotions concerning their connections, both past and present. Others reading this have sincere regret and even distress concerning their connections, both past and present.
Regardless of who or what we have been connected to previous to our life in Christ we are now connected to Him and because of that connection our natural identity, pedigree, resume’ and connections have been replaced by a new life in Jesus Christ.
My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20 NLT)
Our identity is no longer founded upon the life we lived prior to Jesus Christ.
We are a new creation.
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! (2 Corinthians 5:17)
We are citizens of a new kingdom
But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior. (Philippians 3:20)
We have a new Father.
So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:15)
We are members of Christ’s body
All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it. (1 Corinthians 12:28 NLT)
In our new life in Christ is important that we embrace our new identity in Him. The more we define our lives in the same way that God has in His Word the more we will find that the Word will be active in our lives.
If you are struggling with living the Word of God on a daily basis I encourage you to look at how you are defining your life and your own identity. Are you basing your identity upon who and what the world says that you are or is it based upon who the Lord Jesus Christ through His Word declares that you are?
If you are connected to Christ allow His identity to be the foundation of who you are. As you begin to see yourself and this world through His eyes you will be amazed at the changes that will take place in and through your life.
And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:1-2 NLT)