This year we’ve been introduced to four words that we want to lean into as we strive to live a life focused on the Kingdom: Identity, Victory, Kingdom, and Partners.
At Friday’s Renewal Fall Gathering, I was challenged to pause and really focus on that first word – Identity. To really think about the question: who am I?
The women of Pulpit Rock had the privilege of hearing our very own Becky Cleveland speak on this concept of Identity. Exploring who God wants us to be and how God wants us to be.
So let me start with the question: Who are you?
I think often we are either told that we are too much or not enough. Sometimes both at the same time.
I know I’ve been told countless times that I’m too quiet. Maybe you’ve heard the opposite – that you’re too loud. And I can almost guarantee you’ve been told that you aren’t enough. I, for one, remember being told by a coach that I wasn’t talented enough…
Those words sting. No one likes hearing that they don’t measure up.
But those lies don’t only come from others. We often tell them to ourselves.
How often have you let yourself believe that you weren’t enough? Not smart enough, not talented enough, not pretty enough. Or maybe you tell yourself you’re too much. Too loud, too competitive, too ambitious.
We continue to put on these lies like clothes that don’t fit. Becky used the analogy of that one ugly, too-small article of clothing in our closet. The one you feel uncomfortable in every time you put it on, yet you re-wash it and hang it right back in your closet. And the cycle continues.
I know I have a few of those.
But here’s the thing… those identities that may have fit you at one time, or the identities that others have given you might no longer serve you. We have to learn to take those old things off so that we can put something else on. Something God chose for us, something that has a purpose, not a label assigned to us by a lie in the past.
How do we do that? By doing what Paul tells us to do in Colossians 3: “set our heart and mind on things above.”
And when our eyes are focused on things above, and we are immersed in who God is, we become hidden in Him. (Col. 3:3)
I love that phrase.
We may continue to put those old clothes on because they’ve been around for while or because they’re what we’re supposed to be wearing. But it is under of all of those things where we find God. And like a little kid hiding behind our dad, being hidden in God is the safest place we can be.
Not only that, but Paul tells us that once we take those old things off (whether that’s comparison, fear, shame, etc.), we can put on what God calls us to: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, and love. (Col. 3:12-14)
So let me ask again: who are you?
What is true about you under all of those other things that you keep putting on time and time again?
“I am .”
The more I thought about how to fill in that blank, the more I was reminded of all of the things God gifted me with, the passions He gave me, the things that light me up.
So as you think about your own Identity, I encourage you to remind yourself of the talents and passions and values God has created you with, and to ask yourself: where is the gap between those things and what I continue to put on?