Do you ever wonder who you are? Have you ever wondered where you belong?
These are questions I sought to answer for myself as a young adult, and for a while I was content with the world’s answers to those questions. But when my patience ran out, when my world crumbled around me, when I became frustrated with half-truths, when who I was did not make sense to me anymore, I slowly began feeling my way to the Truth.
What I did not expect was that the Truth was not very far from my heart at all; but to see it, I had to lay down my prior beliefs and half-truths in order to taste the full Truth. But before coming to this conclusion, I had fully accepted what the world said about me as my identity. I really believed that my full identity was defined by these characteristics:
- my physical appearance
- how I feel from day to day
- my worldly successes and/or failures (my contribution to the world)
- how I measured up when compared to others
- the desires and lusts of my flesh and the actions I chose to fall victim to
- what others thought of me and my growth
- where my family came from, their traditions and identities
This version of me, although partially true, could never lead me to the full Truth. This is not who I am, nor does it describe my identity, nor my purpose for being created by God. The world’s definitions of things eternal will always stop short of exposing the full Truth of our individual and collective identities. The world’s sad attempts to force their labeled identities on us all is nothing new. But in this particular adulterous generation, the world is begging its inhabitants to brand themselves with any of its nuanced and readily available identities. According the world, now you can choose from a more diverse list of superficial, unspiritual, but non-offensive characteristics to define your full identity, based upon:
- your chosen gender
- your chosen sexual orientation
- your choice of diet
- what music you listen to/who you worship
- your religious views
- what car you drive, what job you work, what house you live in
- what clothes you wear
- Your zodiac sign/Enneagram number/etc.
- how much money you have or don’t have
- what movements or organizations you support and are affiliated with
- who you know and associate with
- the color of your skin
- your family’s history on earth
- your hobbies
- who you voted to be president
I am sure there are more identities and characteristics which I have overlooked; this is not an exhaustive list of choices. Honestly, the list could go on for days but I’ll spare you for the sake of time. The reason why these characteristics and others like them will NEVER reveal the full Truth concerning your identity is because they only attempt to describe the physical reality of an individual. Contrary to what the world says about you, you are more than just a physical being. The Word of God tells us that there are actually three realities which constitute each human being: BODY, SOUL, SPIRIT. The body (the flesh) is the physical reality, the soul (the mind/will/logic of man) is the mental or psychological reality, and the spirit (the heart) exists within the divine reality of a human being.
Therefore, defining yourself or those around you based off of a man-made list of physically-identifying characteristics is not only foolishly short-sighted and WRONG, but it completely denies and ignores an individual’s spiritual reality. I don’t know who needs to hear this, but you are more than your skin, you are more than the urges and desires of your flesh, and YOUR VALUE DOES NOT COME FROM YOUR FLESH. According to the Bible, the essence of your life does not exist in your flesh, but in fact, the life of any creature is found in its blood (Leviticus 17:11). Hence, death occurs when your blood is drained from your body, making the flesh LIFELESS. Once again, the value of your life is not in your flesh and thus cannot be fully identified with fleshly characteristics and definitions.
The devil knows this already, but he’d rather you only define yourself in his terms: physical realities of the flesh, denying you your eternal value. “The mind of the flesh is death; but the mind of the spirit is life and peace, because the mind of the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so,” (Romans 8:6-7). BUT GOD, our Creator, has always seen the spiritual value in all of His creation. And He has not denied us anything; but instead, He has provided us this life and everything in it, and He has even let us choose our labels and has allowed us to be deceived and/or to learn the Truth.
There are spiritual realities which overlap this physical reality in which we are currently existing, but you have the choice to identify yourself however you like during your stay here. But remember this, you will never understand who you are or what you are doing here by using the world’s given identities. God put you here. Not your Aunt Sara, your mom, your brother, or your friends. So don’t ask them, they are trying to “figure it out” too. Want to know who you truly are? Where you truly belong? Ask God. Not the world. Unless you too, in agreement with the devil, have deemed yourself unworthy of eternal life and thus rejected your Maker….therefore, I am no longer responsible for your blood because I have spoken Truth to you on this day.
But more importantly, God Himself stepped down from heaven into this physical world, bore Himself into a Man (with flesh!), and at the perfect time, Jesus died upon a cross for our sins—all while we were still sinners (Romans 5:6). We weren’t sorry, we didn’t care, we thought it was funny, we acted in pride, and it gave birth to death. BUT GOD brought Life out of death through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. GOD reveals His power through weakness (for Jesus, this weakness was death) and it pleased Him to manifest His wisdom through the message of foolishness (1st Corinthians 1:21-29) in order to bring to the world’s wisdom to nothing and so that no man can boast. When Christ came down to the physical world and when He laid down His life for us, He was willing to lose it all in order that He may gain it back again. These spiritual paradoxes which took place at the cross penetrated every physical and spiritual realm in existence, opened the Door to eternal life for sinners so that physical death would not be the end for those who have been spiritually born again: forever forgiven and constantly washed anew by the Spirit through the blood of Christ which He shed upon a cross some 2,000 years ago. That is my chosen identity. I am redeemed. I am a child of the Promise, I belong to Him.
“The God who created the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, because it is He who gives to all [people] life and breath and all things.
And He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their lands and territories.
This was so that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grasp for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us.”
“The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you–they are full of the Spirit and life.”
“For who has known or understood the mind of the Lord so as to guide and instruct Him and give Him knowledge? But we have the mind of Christ and do hold the thoughts of His heart.”
1st Corinthians 2:16
“For the word of God is living and active and full of power. It is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating as far as the division of the soul and spirit, and of both joints and marrow, exposing and judging the very thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
“I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”