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Our Identities

September 2nd, 2014 Leave a comment Go to comments

“For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”  2 Tim 1:7

As a child, I pretended I was various superheroes.  I did not mimic any specific ones, but pretended I was someone who could save lives and become adored by all who knew me.  Moving into adolescence, my ideas of what I wanted to be morphed, for the most part into the idea of how I could be accepted by those in my school and church.  I was a lonely young man who had few friends, and was the butt of everyone’s jokes.  I was an easy target for bullies who did not waste many opportunities to torment me.  At home, it was pretty much required that we children be perfect, and any mistakes we made were open to be used as instrument of public humiliation.  I had a poor sense of who I was, and wanting to be accepted, would do just about anything to make it happen.

Many people go through tough childhoods, most probably harder than my own.  However, the experiences I had helps me understand that many people create false identities in order to obtain some degree of self worth.  The problem is, these identities are not real.  They may satisfy for a season, many times a lengthy season, but in the long run they will cause us to waste our lives in useless activities and the fulfillment of vain ambitions.   We end up living in a fantasy world of our own making, which allows us to escape the pain of real life for a time.  However, all that we have done is put a mask on in hopes that everyone will see the person we want to project instead of who we really are.  And the real person, no matter how hard we try, will eventually reveal himself at a time most unwanted, and shatter the illusions we tried so hard to make real.

So, who are we really?  Many would say we are a product of chance + time, of an evolutionary process that over millions of years produced all life we have today from a simple protein formed when lightening hit a pool of goo causing everything to align perfectly for a simple spark of life to come into existence.  Wow, that’s a mouthful.  However, what does this say about life here as we know it?  Mainly that it is meaningless.  For what meaning can we derive from chance?  And let us assume that we did come into existence, by chance.  Then our meaning comes from what we or other chance creatures decide our meaning is.  Meaning then becomes, at it’s core, a product of chance.  And if it is a product of chance, than is it true meaning?  I say No!

I could go on with how the theory of evolution has many fallacious arguments that cannot stand the test of logic.  It defies Newton’s second Law of Thermodynamics which states anything left to itself tends toward decay.  It also requires a universe that has always existed.  Again, this would defy Newton’s second Law.  Motion causes a loss of energy, in essence entropy, which ultimately would result in a loss of all energy ending with a dead system.  If the universe has always existed and has always  been in motion, loss of all energy would already have resulted in a dead universe.  As far as I can tell, this universe still has a lot of energy.  But as stated above, this is not the purpose of this post.

So, if we could not of come into existence by chance, then we had to of come into existence by design.  And the designer had to be in existence prior to the universe, which necessitates anything in this universe as well, including us.  It would require a being who can bring something out of nothing, that can design extremely intricate systems as large as the universe and as small as a single atom.  And if He created us, then there must be a reason, which would be the meaning for our existence.   And this meaning is what gives us our identity.

So, after all that, what is our Identity?   As Christians, I posit the following verse as the answer.  “Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.” 1 John 3:2  The answer is, we are children of God.  It is just that simple.  However, understanding this is another thing.  If God is our Father, which He is, then let’s see who God is.  The following is a brief description of God as found throughout the Holy Scriptures, to help us understand who He truly is.

God is our adoptive Father, who has existed from eternity past and will continue through eternity future.  He created all that exists out of nothing, by His spoken word.  He is all powerful, all knowing and there is not a place in all existence where He is not at any given moment.  He does all that He chooses and no one or nothing can prevent His will from being accomplished.  He guides all history and raises up and brings down kings at His decree, and controls the borders of nations, keeping them within the barriers set for them until the time He chooses to allow their expansion.  He has set a plan in motion, which absolutely must take place.  He created man in His image, and gave him dominion over all creation.  However, man rebelled, as God knew he would, but He did not leave him in darkness, but sent His only begotten Son, making a way for man to be reconciled with Him.  He loves all men, but will not force anyone to follow Him, but gives all the opportunity to make Him Lord.  He is patient, not wanting any to perish, but has set a time for this era to end.  And He has created a place for His children to live for all eternity, a place that our eyes have never see, our ears have never heard about, and our minds have never imagined.  And He is constantly protecting those who are His.  And going back a couple of paragraphs, our purpose here is to be in communion with this Almighty God, and to enjoy fellowship with Him.

As Christians, we do not need to create our own identity, for we have had an identity since before the foundations of the world.   As Paul wrote to the Church at Ephesus, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”  Eph 1:3-6  We are the adopted children of the Almighty God described in the previous paragraph.  A being so far beyond us, it says that as the heaven’s are above the earth, His ways are above our ways, and His thoughts above ours.  One of infinite power, knowledge and majesty, and who has prepared a place for us, such that we may dwell with Him forever and forever.  We have the right to bear His name and to go before Him in both humility and boldness.  We can relate  to Him as ABBA, our Daddy.  What an incredible identity.  Why do we then feel the need to create an identity that pales in comparison to our actual identity in Christ.

As a child, I would dream of being someone great, a superhero so to speak, who could do everything necessary to keep friends and family safe.  I longed to be someone who was strong enough to fight off the bullies and make my parents proud of me, rather than someone who constantly was a disappointment.  I struggled to find ways to be approved of by both my family and peers; all along believing I was someone no one wanted to be around.  I began to act like others wanted me to, simply to feel accepted.   As an adult, I still strove to find my identity through pleasing and trying to fit in.  But Christ has set me free from all that, and a wonderful peace has taken the place of the torment of insecurity.  I now know that I am the son of the God of the Universe.  He accepts me as I am, and is working to conform me to the image of Christ, which is as it was always intended.  If you have never embraced your true identity as a child of God, I encourage you to do so.  And I also want to encourage you to study the scriptures, focusing on who God is as revealed in the scriptures.  Then you will understand just who you really are.  A child of the eternal King.  What more could you ever want to be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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