Not too long ago I had a realization that one of the reasons I have had difficulty clarifying or articulating dreams or goals related to my spiritual life was because I somehow had missed getting a deep sense of my own identity. Up until relatively recently, my faith has been very intellectual and head based. This resulted in not really feeling like I had a strong sense of God’s presence or love for me, even though I knew in my head that he did. I came to realize that this was also true about my sense of identity. I had really clear logical and intellectual observations about what I DID, my actions, decisions, hobbies, and so on, but was much less clear when it came to who I AM.
I have come to realize that some of the sense of “I AM” that I felt was missing involved being a vehicle or channel through which my various skills, actions, decisions find expression. These are things that I do, yes, but the fact is that I carry out those actions and do those things because they are expressions of identity – I am a worshipper, I am a nurturer and encourager, I am creative, and so on. These are gifts and talents that God has placed within me – the doing flows naturally out of the identity of BEING. It follows just as naturally that I embody the joy that I am through the enjoyment of things I like to do for fun. Because I am beauty, I am drawn to beauty in nature and the beauty and creativity of things I see in museums and architecture and so on. God’s gifts within me create the identity I have – this is who God created me to BE. They are more than just characteristics I see or things I do. They are my identity in Christ Jesus.
What I do and how I do it flow naturally from who I am. I sing praises and express worship through my voice, my body, my being, because that is who I AM. I create beautiful, useful, and comforting things because I AM beauty, and creativity, and nurture. I experience and express love and righteousness because Jesus gives them to and through me, and because of Him they are part of my identity too. Do you know who You are?