1 Peter 2:9 (NIV) - But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
How are men likely to identify themselves with? Do we identify ourselves based on our athletic ability, or what we do in our career? Many men identify themselves based on their hobbies, what they do at work, or what role they play in life. But these views of our identity are temporal, and can change at a moment’s notice. They are only a portion of what we do that are as fleeting as the wind.
As a martial artist, I used to identify myself as one more than even a Christian. But over the years, my talents and abilities have changed. I am not as agile or athletic as I once was. Should I identify myself as a martial artist? Not at all! If I did, I would be depressed.
Men identify themselves based on their career, but what happens if they no longer are employed, or they are forced to change careers? What a shock to the system!
God has another view of our identity; an identity that is eternal, never changing, and always consistent.
In an article I received from James MacDonald, there are lies we have all probably heard:
- You are unique
- You are your job
- God needs you
- You have to chase your dreams
- You are your appearance
You Are Unique
Our fingerprints and DNA are unique, but when it comes to talents, skills, we are not unique. People share the same talents and skills. James 5:17 – Elijah was a man with a nature like ours.
However, there is freedom in being ordinary. What can this mean? We don’t have the deal with the pressure of being the only one.
You are your job
Whatever we do, is not who we are. My title may be front end developer or martial arts instructor, but those are just titles. They can come and go. That is freedom in itself. I don’t have to identify myself with what I do.
Luke 12:15 – One’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.
I’m glad I don’t have to be identified with my stuff.
God Needs You
This one I had to wrestle with, but God doesn’t need anyone of us. He chose us to do His Will. That is so much better knowing my loving God chose me to be part of His plan even though I am not truly needed.
Luke 19:40 – I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.
You have to chase your dreams
We are all pressured into thinking we have to do something great and extravagant, to shake the world at its core, otherwise, God will be disappointed in us. Right where we are, faithfully honoring God, we can do the little things. Follow Christ!
Luke 9:23 – If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.
You are your appearance
Fitness has grown into less about working out and staying in shape, but to look better and attractive. What this does is constantly disappoint. We focus so much on our appearance, it would take a lifetime just to maintain. It can be very exhausting. Our bodies are wasting away, so instead of focusing so hard no how we look, focus on that which does not fade away, our hearts, our spirit.
1 Peter 3:3a-4 – Do not let your adorning be external, but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.
God sees right through us.
What lies have we been tempted with? Why is there freedom in being ordinary?