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Understanding Your Identity

“There was no identity crisis in the life of Jesus Christ. He knew who He was, He knew where He had come from, and why He was here. And He knew where He was going. And when you are that liberated, then you can serve.”

Howard Hendricks

Jesus understood who He was. He knew He was the Son of God; therefore, He didn’t have to do anything to prove He possessed that favored position. Jesus wasn’t a “wanna-be;” He didn’t perform so that others would acknowledge who He was. In fact, He was free to act the opposite of what others expected Him to be. Jesus fully grasped His divine identity. John 13:3 says, “Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God.”

For many years my identity was wrapped up in becoming an author. I was a “wanna-be” writer. I jumped through the hoops to look like an author, to prove to others I was an author, in order to feel like an author. Wanna-be‘s don’t know their true identity, so they strive and struggle to become someone else. At that time, I thought it odd that my friends who were published authors, didn’t have to mention they were authors. It was no big deal to them. They were free to be themselves, because they fully understood their identity.

Jesus recognized His identity as God’s Son and all the authority and empowerment that came with that position. He didn’t have to go around bragging or proving He was the Son of God, because He knew who He was. Thus, He humbled Himself and took the lowly posture of a servant and washed His disciples’ feet. Because Jesus acknowledged His identity, He was free to be whoever God wanted Him to be in each situation. Likewise, when we know our identity in Christ, we will be free to be ourselves, who God created us to be, for every circumstance in life.

You don’t have to prove who you are, when you know who you are. Grasp your identity as God’s son or daughter and you will grab ahold of freedom. Pursuing a specific identity keeps us in bondage to try to become someone we’re not. Knowing who you are in Christ, liberates you to be who God created you to be. Cease striving to become a “wanna-be,” and embrace who you already are in Christ.

“If our identity is in our work, rather than Christ, success will go to our heads, and failure will go to our hearts.”

Timothy Keller

Relevant Reflections:

  1. Describe a time when you were a “wanna-be,” and strove to be like someone else.

  2. How can you grow in understanding your identity?

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