Identity Distortion: New Lives

Your true identity in Christ has nothing to do with how you look, what you’ve done, what you’ve experienced, or what you struggle with. You were made for adventure and fun with God. Fun without limits! When God made Adam, and put him in the garden, everything was Adam’s to explore; it was his to name. He had dominion over it all, and it was good! God wanted that. Creation wasn’t complete without Adam because God didn’t name it. He wanted Adam to partner with Him to finish it all.

Adam was still lacking something though; he needed a helper. He needed someone who was similar enough to understand, but who was just different enough to be completely fascinating. Nothing in all creation could fill that role until God made Eve. She was unique and mysterious. They belonged to each other, and they knew their purpose. Together, they explored God’s perfect world, and they were truly alive. I want you to notice that all of this comes from submitting to God’s rule–doing what He told them to do. The only thing required of them was to have dominion over all creation, and to be completely satisfied in God. Sounds like the best job in the world, if you ask me! Everything was fine until they chose themselves instead; things are a lot more difficult now, huh?

We now have to work hard at everything, even at understanding who we are. It’s just barely there in our minds, but is still out of reach. I’ve noticed it in books and movies I’ve seen. It’s so close to being accurate! This is what I see: A true man is passionate about something. He knows what he needs to do. He will fight and overcome anything in order to complete his mission, and every action that he does is motivated by his passion for the end goal. You can see that in any story you can think of where there is a male hero. In pop culture, that end goal is wrong. It’s usually a woman, or family, or acceptance, or revenge, or money, or fame, or pleasure, or skills, etc.

Jesus definitely fits here too! Jesus was passionate! He knew what he needed to do. He overcame everything, even death, so that you might live forever with him. For Jesus, that end goal had nothing to do with things of this world. He was passionate about God’s will; everything he ever did was motivated by his passion/love for God, and his passion/love for people. You can’t point to a truer man than Jesus.

We also just barely know what it means to be a woman. We’re so close! In all of our stories, the woman wants to be romanced. But she also plays a part in a big adventure that no one else ever could. Because of her beauty, strength, and mystery, she is often (and understandably) pursued.

The thing we miss is that none of that can ever happen without submitting to God’s will. Look at Mary, the mother of Jesus. By submitting to God’s will, she now had something to offer that no one else could–herself. No one else could have done what she did, and God knew that; it’s why He chose her. Mary gave life; she brought Jesus into the world! I’m confident that her passion for God influenced Jesus’ passion, and I bet Joseph thought that was very attractive. Jesus cared for her, even on the cross–he made sure she would be looked after. I’m sure Mary wanted to protect Jesus, too; she was his mother! All of this showed her to be an irreplaceable part of a huge adventure, and that made her uniquely beautiful. I think Mary is a great example, but she’s surely not the only one! Look for yourself!

We were made to be alive. From what I’ve seen, people feel most alive when they are using their strength to make a difference. The best place to find strength is found in Galatians 5:22. Just take that in! Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control. Think about it. None of that comes easy. You have to work for it–practice it. Jesus had to practice it too, and look at what kind of person he was!  Submit to God, and you will come alive; that’s why He made us! Let God guide you to be who He created you to be!

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive.” -Howard Thurman


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