The last couple of days have been a struggle. To be honest, I am not entirely sure why. I have my suspicions. A lot of it is my own insecurity. Recently, I have found myself comparing myself to others either wanting to look more beautiful, or get a successful job after university, or just appear to be an ‘all-together, life is grand, my prayer life is in tact and I have tithed more than ever before’ kind of Christian. However, these feelings of insecurity are far from who I am meant to be. Society spoon feeds this ideal to us – that we should become successful, make money, look a certain way, lose a certain amount of weight, or gain it if we are a size -0. Society says our identity is in our job, in our families, in what tweets we post, on what political affiliation we have, on what charities we give or we don’t give to… The list is endless. It is no wonder that recently I have neglected my true identity and swapped it to a very false idea that could not be much more damaging. It has affected me as I find myself in moments of deep sadness, worry, anxiety and occasionally in floods of tears. What is a Christian supposed to do?
As I am writing this, I have had a moment of reflection with the bible opened up before me and I remember and say aloud that ‘My identity is in Christ Jesus.’ My identity is not on what I look like, but on what He looks like on the cross. As he was crucified, he was taking my place. He loved me that much that he took all of my guilt, shame and wrong-doing upon Himself. The blood that he shed was an atonement. I was bought at a price. I was purchased by the blood of the sacrificial Lamb. That Lamb is Jesus.
My identity is not on what job I attain, but on what I am commissioned to do by Jesus – to tell others about Him and to retell of the sacrificial love He has for each one of us. I am to declare boldly, joyfully and peacefully about the triumph of the cross. On the third day, Christ is risen. Death is beaten. Witnesses testify to it. He made a way for us to be in a relationship with God, even when we do not deserve it. He loves us so much that he died for us. Me and you. Over 2000 years later, despite the persecution throughout history and into the present day of Christians worldwide, the living God is here. People are being saved and turning to meet Jesus in a miraculous way today.
My identity is not on my success, but it is on His victory. He has defeated death for us. Death affects us all, but he has overcome even death, so that we can experience an eternal joy that is only found by being in the presence of Father, Son and Spirit. My identity is in this wonderful Saviour Jesus Christ. I am now free from sin and death because Jesus Christ was ‘crowned with glory and honour because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone’ (Hebrews 2:9).
Why should a King die for me and you? Romans 5:7-10 says “For one will scarcely die for a righteous person – though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die – but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have been justified by His blood, much more shall we be saved by Him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by His life’.
Therefore, my identity is in the living God who is much bigger than this challenging circumstance I find myself in. I can be confident in who I am in Jesus no matter what insecurity I struggle with. I know that Jesus said ‘In the world you will have tribulation (trouble)’ and I believe my trouble at the moment is this struggle with insecurity. But Jesus goes on to say ‘But take heart; I have overcome the world’ (John 16: 33). I can be bold and confident that I have an identity that is firmly grounded in Jesus. He delights in me and is with me always, until the end of the age.
Psalm 18: 31-33: ‘For who is God, but the Lord? And who is a rock, except our God? – the God who equipped me with strength and made my way blameless. He made my feet like the feet of a deer and set me secure on the heights.’