Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Identity.




Often people in the church setting speak of this thing - Identity.  They discuss how you need to have it, that it can be found in Christ, and that it is a necessity for living well.  What I feel gets missed is what is Identity and how do we get this elusive, but oh so valuable gift?

According to Merriam - Webster

Identity is -
a :  the distinguishing character or personality of an individual:  individuality
b :  the relation established by psychological identification

This is just a small part of the definition, but key because I believe it was what we often think of when we consider our identity.

When I think of my identity I often consider what I do, where I came from, my successes.  I identify with what others say about me and inevitably those all work to become realities in my life.

The unique separation in all of this is that we often miss our true identity or in essence our true self.  We become what we've been called, what we do, we are either good enough, better than others, or not good.  We tend to not see ourselves as complete.  We are in process, attaining a goal, reaching, ever reaching to this higher and elusive height.  Why?  At our core we have not accepted and loved ourselves for who we are.  Not our accomplishments, our backgrounds, the honor of others.

This is what I believe the church is often calling us to, though we often find church to demand our true selves and give little to no value for what it encourages us to be.  Church is usually the first place to point to giftings, successes, attributes, and assigning personal value based on those who excel.  It is rare to find the father who works 60 hours a week to provide enough for his family, honored in such a setting.  Or the mother who gives without fail to her children.  Or the working family who struggles together to make ends meet.  It is not often that the secretary is given the same value as the pastor.

We identify and glory often in our roles, but fail to realize that these things are simply what we do, they do not make us or define us.

We are given huge value.  We have all been called with a destiny and purpose, though it will most likely not look like another's.

A server is often dismissed and rejected, while the CEO is given the head of the table. And while each has earned their status, neither award or reward defines the identity of one better than the other.

Honor.

A word tossed often around.  Yet rarely given where it is most due.  Honor comes easy to those with status, but less often to those cleaning the floors. Honor becomes a hungry demand to the one who has not learned to give it.  Love, respect, value, and honor - these are all things that flow from the one who has learned themselves and understand their identity.

Identity is handed from the hand of Him who made us.  It is whispered in our hearts and spirit.  Is not the voice of our parents, siblings, coworkers, or friends.  It is the knowing in our hearts and souls that outside of what we do - we were made with a purpose, a joyful gift that when operated in, spreads, blessing to all with whom we come in contact.

I encourage you to learn to hear the voice of Him who made you, that you may hear not only His pleasure, but his unique plan and purpose for your life.  It will not look like anyone else.  Like you, it is a special gift.