Your Identity – It’s Who’s You Are!
Identity is powerful. It is who you are.
Identity colors your relationships and your work. It influences how you connect with God. It’s effects are far reaching – they touch every aspect of your life.
As the song suggests, it’s common to be “Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places.” We often seek identity in the wrong places too! Success, possessions, how you look, your “brand,” what you do, your skills or talents, can all be misguided ways to seek identity.
If you’ve watched the TLC show Long Lost Family, you know how gripping the stories of adults searching for their birth parents are. It’s clear that when you don’t know who you really belong to, there’s a void in your heart in spite of amazing adoptive parents.
Genetics are powerful. A friend recently had the opportunity to spend time with relatives she’d spent very little time with, yet she could not get over all the many similarities. Between the laugh and the walk, it was easy to see that they were related.
I’ve experienced the same thing. Without trying, my granddaughter has the same heel heavy walk I do. My grandson could easily be mistaken for one of my brothers when they were his age – a family friend confirmed my observation.
While children who have been adopted may pick up habits or ways of doing things, they don’t resemble their parents in the same way. They do however, take on the identity of their adoptive parents, and that identity is priceless.
Over the years, my husband and I have had the privilege of supporting friends and family in the process of adoption. There are two things that stand out to me about the adoption process. First, no two adoption scenarios are the same. Second, the process is arduous and not for the faint of heart.
More than thirty years ago, friends of ours adopted three children from two different birth moms over the course of several years. With their middle son, everything seemed to be fine until the birth mother decided she wanted her son back. Because in California birth moms have the right to change their mind within the first year, there were several weeks of waiting for the situation to play out.
One evening, my husband and I, along with some other couples from our church, gathered with the parents to pray and support them. That’s when the police arrived to remove their adopted son from their home. It was tense moment, but because of the show of support, prayer, and relentless faith, their adopted son remained in their care. It was an incredible victory!
You’d be surprised at all that’s involved in the process of adopting a child, including home checks and the expense! And yet the desire to adopt is real!
I have a niece that was adopted a little later in life and brought to the states from Russia. Her adoption also required persistence, money, and an intense desire to lavish love on someone who truly needed a family.
No matter what the details are in someone’s adoption story, the effort to adopt a child is all done by the parents. The children do absolutely nothing in the process.
Your Adoption Story
The same is true for you as an adopted son or daughter of God. Jesus did everything necessary for you to become a child of God by paying the price on the cross. He did it all! You just have to accept His gift and take on your new identity.
If you are a believer, a Christ follower, you’ve been adopted by God and now He’s your Father. You are a part of His family. You can’t do anything to become more a part of His family. Your true identity is in Him.
How you see yourself makes a difference. Jesus understood that He was the Son of God. When Jesus was baptized, His Father declared that Jesus was His Son and that He was well pleased (Matthew 3:17). Jesus confidently and clearly understood who He was. He wasn’t confused about His identity nor did He doubt it.
That’s the benefit of being a son or daughter of the living God! You are His. He is well pleased with you. Knowing your identity has amazing implications for your life and work. Sadly, too often we forget who’s we are.
Imagine how tickled adoptive parents must be when their children stand firmly in their new identity? Owning that they are a “Johnson” or a “Valdez” in bold ways.
And I bet when you are operating out of your new, true identity in Him – He’s beyond delighted too!
Want to remain more mindful of Who’s you are and your identity in Him? Consider…
1. Staying in The Word
Just like you need to eat multiple times a day to remain healthy and strong, you also need to feed on God’s Word regularly to be reminded of God’s deep love for you, and what it looks like to be His child.
A quick read isn’t sufficient – you need additional ways to remain to surround yourself with Scripture because we quickly forget. Consider memorizing key verses or listening to scripture-based worship music. Study your Bible – dig in and discover the deeper nuances of what it means to find your identity in Him. Get involved in a small group or Bible Study. Whatever it takes to stay in the Word and renew your mind.
2. Connecting With Your Father
The best way for an adoptive child to reflect their new identity? Spending time with their adoptive parents and truly getting to know them! The same is true for you – without that personal relationship, it‘s hard to reflect the Father. Just knowing about Him is not enough. In His presence, you naturally become more like Him. So, involve Him in your day. Talk with Him. Listen for His voice.
3. Accepting His Love & Approval
God’s approval for you is not because of what you’ve done. It’s because He’s done what’s necessary for you to become His son or daughter. Being certain that you are His beloved son or daughter enables you to trust His leading and live more fully from Him.
4. Carving Out Time To Pray
Praying is more than just rattling off your many requests and sharing a list of what you want God to do for you. It’s about sharing what’s on your mind – all that you’ve been thinking about and feeling and asking Him questions and really listening to what He has to say. Praying is about acknowledging who He is and all that you have to be grateful for and savoring His presence. That’s tough to experience when you are attempting to pray on the go.
After all, when you truly love someone, time spent in their presence is something you long for!
How would your life and work be different if you knew Who’s you were?
- Glorifying Him in all you do would be your desire and focus.
- Less striving – you already have all you need in Him!
- Fear would fade. What’s to fear when He’s your dad?
- Comparing, judging, pleasing, trying to be perfect, etc. would no longer be necessary.
- Your confidence would soar despite difficulties – your dad created the entire universe!
May you step more into your identity: Who’s you are!
Where are you searching for identity?