This last weekend I had accepted an exceedingly difficult challenge. My close friend and partner in ministry Hyla had planned a women’s retreat for our church. She asked me to deliver the messages that weekend…but, I had to talk about our identity.
Identity…in Christ. Not just as women, but just in general.
I was told months ago that this would be the challenge. It took me months to prepare four messages of only about twenty minutes. I wrestled from beginning to end on how these messages should be prepared and delivered.
Identity in Christ…are you kidding me. Talk about not only a weighty concept, but an immensely wide topic.
What part of that was I supposed to emphasize? The death of our sin nature, the sacrifice of Christ and His resurrection, the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, the spiritual birth of believers, the adoption into the family of God, the difference between flesh and sin nature, the dichotomy of our flesh and our spirit?
Yeah, there was no way I was ever going to do this subject the justice it truly deserves. There was no way that every woman on that retreat was going to walk away understanding every intricacy and beautiful detail of her new identity founded in the Godhead.
But I could be real.
I decided to show them the raw truth.
I’m not perfect.
I struggle every day.
I’ve hurt people closest to me.
The moment I lose sight of who I am made to be in Christ,
I become this needy, ugly version of me.
I become a muddied, silly idea of Christ-likeness.
Indeed, in those moments that I have forgotten my first love,
I have forgotten myself,
who I really am.
I cling to everything that can momentarily satisfy me.
I need of people.
But, people are people.
I need God.
This is what identity is. Our identity is in that law of God. Our ‘inner being’ talked about is the identity we should be living by; it’s founded in God and given to us by the power of the Holy Spirit. Yet, there’s that dichotomy with the flesh again, ‘…captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members (flesh).’
Our flesh is made up of our physical body, our consciousness, our thoughts, memories, feelings, chemical reactions…
Yeah…that’s right. That’s a lot to battle when you’re used to sinning…often.
Even though the Bible is pretty clear that our sin nature dies the moment we accept the gift of salvation we still have to battle the body that was once born into sin. We live in a sinful world with temptations all around us.
These are all things that can get in our way,
makes us think we need them.
At the end of the day…
if you have the Holy Spirit indwelling you,
you have everything you need.
Your identity in Christ
What He has done for you.
Where you’re going after this planet and life.
So I became real and shared with everyone the struggle of knowing your identity.
I lose sight of my identity…probably multiple times a day.
I suddenly become more concerned with who I think I should be than who I am.
Being married brought out that identity crisis in me.
Every day I have to remember who I am.
I am made new.
I am His.
I am dead to sin.
I am alive in spirit.
I am going to heaven.
I have no condemnation.
God has made new.
God has adopted.
God died on the cross on Calvary.
God defeated the grave.
God has called,
Christ is where we start
and where we end.
He is the in-between.
He is all we need,
all we should want.
The more you know of Him,
the less you should wonder of yourself.
The more you trust in Him,
the less you need trust yourself.
Our identity is in Him.
Know Him to know yourself.