I usually try to write practical things in ministry. But I thought I would share something I have been learning personally in my own life and I have been wrestling with myself and I hope it can speak to some of you as well:
To have your identity in Christ means that you’re placing your confidence for life and eternity in the Lord Jesus Christ. It means that you’re learning to do all that you do with and for Jesus. It means that you want other people to see Jesus when they look at you. To have your identity in Christ means that you are being formed more and more into the image of the Lord.
Identity is trusting. We show what we have trusted in every day, almost every moment. Who we hang out with, what hurts us, what we spend the most time doing is where our trust is, where are treasure is, in all honesty, it is where our god is. Sharing Jesus wouldn’t be scary if we trusted his promises.
Trust takes time. It also takes risks.
What this means is that you abandon any image of yourself that is not from God. You stop accepting what others have said about you, how others have labeled you, how others have defined you, how big your ministry is. You start believing what God says about you, that he is pleased with how he created you.
You’re not defined by your feelings. You’re not defined by the opinions of others or by your circumstances. You’re not defined by your successes or failures. You’re not defined by your ministry or leadership. Craig Groeshel said this and it has resonated me ever since, “You are not who others say you are. You are who God says you are and He says that you are His.” You are defined by God and God alone. He identifies you as his own (2 Corinthians 1:22).
The thing is, if you don’t know who you are, then you’re vulnerable to other people telling you who you are. But the gospel truth is that you are who God says you are, and no one else has a vote in the matter. This “identity issue” is an important part of living the abundant life. Jesus was able to face the incredible demands of his mission because he knew exactly who he was. He knew that he mattered to God, and that gave him confidence to move purposefully in faith. You have a specific purpose for where you are at in this time in ministry.
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship