Who Are You?
I’ve maybe stated this before in an earlier blog, but up until about the age of 14, I was fully convinced that I was going to be a player for the Green Bay Packers. This was no joke to me growing up! I watched every single game. I wore so much gear to school that my teachers would ask me if I have any other clothes! I would play outside with our neighbors and try to throw like Brett Favre, run like Ahman Green, catch like Donald Driver, and tackle like Reggie White. When it was cold outside, I insisted to not wear a coat so that my body would be able to adapt well the the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field in a December playoff game.
I knew who I wanted to be, and every decision I made, even down to what I wore, was a made to the end of becoming a professional football player for the Green Bay Packers. And as stupid as it sounds, you process things the same way I did (and still do).
Who are you? Have you ever really asked yourself that? I mean more than just simply knowing your name and your favorite color, I mean who are you really? What are your desires? What do you enjoy and not enjoy? What kind of person do you want to be? What kind of mother do you want to be to your kids? What kind of spouse do you want to marry?
We all have answers in mind for those questions and other ones alike, but what we don’t always realize is that those answers are inspired by a spark of who we believe ourselves to be. And that spark can be great, giving us motivation and clarity for who we are and where we are going. Or… The spark can be destructive, tearing down our dreams, magnifying our weaknesses, and discouraging us from being who God created us to be. Something to be cautious of is that in order to answer those questions above rightly, we need to know rightly who we really are. Because if I’m honest, I don’t think you probably know who you are as much as you think you do. You know who you WANT to be. You know what you want people to see you as. But you don’t, at your core, know where your identity rests. Thankfully, God tells us who we are.
One of my biggest struggles is thinking rightly about myself. Abraham Heschel says this in his book ‘Who Is Man’, “We become what we think of ourselves… What determines one’s being is the image one adopts.”
For me, I think myself far too often as unqualified and unable to do what God wants me to do. So since we become what we think, guess who I become when I think that way? I become narrow-minded, faithless, and dry. Why? Because I’ve believed a lie about myself. How about you? If you get quiet with yourself and are honest, what do you think of yourself? Maybe it’s unlovable. Maybe it’s messy and stupid. Maybe its being proud. Maybe you see yourself as inferior because somebody is better at something than you. Maybe you think that you have the answer to everything. Whatever it is, we make decisions and yield to that disposition. And the problem with that is that as Christians, we don’t always think of ourselves as God thinks of us.
God says that you are clean. He says that you are pure and blameless. God says that since you have Him, you have no bounds for what you can and can’t do. God says that He will use you, even in the existence of your flaws. God says that you are loved and forgiven beyond comprehension, and that you are lavished in a never ending grace. This isn’t just simply what God THINKS is true of you, it’s what He KNOWS is true of you. So both extremes of having a false humility and insecurity and having prideful arrogance in thinking too highly of yourself are both wrong and problematic.
How differently would we live if we thought of ourselves as God thinks of us?
Your best thinking has gotten you where you are today, and that can be a good thing or a bad thing. For most of us, we have thought a certain way about ourselves that we don’t think twice about it. But until you think differently about yourself and adhere to who God says you are, you will never know yourself for who you really are. You will be a spin-off. You will be average, subpar, and nothing special.
Before you talk, before you write an idea off, before you open the Bible, before you choose sin; remember who God says you are. Amazing things are in store for you and me, we just need to keep working harder in reminding ourselves who we are. What we do from there works itself out.
But before we ask ourselves big questions of where we want to go, what we want to do, and who we want to be with, we must first ask ourselves this question, “Who am I?” And from that question we should respond from the state of our TRUE identity, beloved children of God.