Who am I?
This is a question that has weaved itself into the fabric of my life since I can remember. At some of the lowest points in my life, I have found myself tormented with my struggle with identity. At other times, my doubting thoughts have seemed a little more innocent. I have fallen back on finding my identity as
a good kid
a solid student
a codependent “fixer”
an adoptive parent
The list could go on and on. But you know what? All of these things will fall short of making me feel complete and worthy. And as I felt the foundations of each and every one of these rumble- some more than others- I have been left breathless, scrambling for a better, more dependable way to define myself.
One of the things that really made an impression on me when I was in Kenya was the manner in which others introduced themselves. Time after time, men and women would introduce themselves by saying “Hi my name is ___ and I am a Christian.” Boldly and proudly. Their identity is secure as a child of God rather than boasting in their alma mater, profession, or family. Perhaps this was because Christ was all they had; everything else had been abruptly stripped away through disease or famine. Or perhaps they were just smarter than I.
Ultimately, I know where my identity should always be found.
I know that I am a child of God (John 1:12), redeemed and forgiven of all of my sins (Colossians 1:13-14).
I know that I am complete in Christ (Colossians 2:9-1) and that God works for my good in all circumstances (Romans 8:28).
I know that I am free from all condemnation that can be brought against me and that nothing can separate me from the love of God (Romans 8:31-39).
I know I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13).
I know that I am greatly loved by God (Colossians 3:12) and, through Him, and more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37).
Believe me, I do know all of these things but sometimes do a terrible job at extending my head knowledge to my heart. In his awesome book Victory Over the Darkness, Dr. Neil Anderson wrote, “The more you reaffirm who you are in Christ, the more your behavior will begin to reflect your true identity.”
So true. That’s why, knowing well my natural propensity to doubt my true identity, I practically have to drill these verses into my head. In my latter college years, I carried them around on index cards in my backpack. Now, I plaster them to my car dashboard, planner, and computer. The more I saturate myself with blatant reminders of my identity in Christ, the more I believe them. And as I allow myself to rest in my identity in Christ, I am able to be a far better wife, mother, nurse, and friend.