May 11, 2021

Suggested Reading: referenced verses

I and the Father are one—John 10:30

From day one of his earthly life Jesus had a firm grasp on his identity. Even when he was a boy of twelve, he knew who he was. Remember when his family had traveled to Jerusalem to attend temple and later Mary and Joseph could not find him? Exhausted after three days of looking they finally found him in the temple teaching! His response to a frantic (and I’m sure both relived and angry Mary) was, “Didn’t you know that I had to be in my Father’s house?” (Like 2:41-52) the same as respectfully saying, “I never forget who I am, whose I am, where I came from and what I must be about.” Jesus knowledge of his identity would shape his entire life and activity upon the earth.

Whenever Jesus spoke of himself he always spoke with affirmation; “I am the Bread of Life, I am the Living Water, I am the light of the world, I have come to bring life, I am he who heals you…..” Even when the devil tried to tempt or deceive him, the devil was not successful because Jesus always knew who he was. He never lost sight of that not in his lifetime, and not at even at the occasion of his death when Pilate tried to slander his name but Jesus only responded in the affirmative; “It is as you say.”

There is power for living and being in knowing our identity. This is what The Father wants for us: to be so cemented in our identity through Christ that we cannot be shaken or moved from that place.

“I Am,” is an affirmation of existence. The fact that we are born and occupy space affirms we are here. But additionally now through holy baptism and relationship with the God who made us, our identity is not limited to a physical being but one which is also spiritual, belonging to God the Father, a follower and believer in God the Son, and in partnership with God the Holy Spirit who fills us. Therefore, our identity is shaped and affirmed through the Triune God and the things we believe, think, and feel about ourselves are to flow from that which we are told in the Scriptures which are God-breathed and useful to correct our thinking and feelings (2 Tim. 3:16).

The world and devil come to us (through many avenues) and say, “You are nothing special; just like everybody else, just another number or face in the crowd …” But we know differently through God’s word which is the truth that we are someone very special and have been “uniquely and wonderfully made” by our Father’s own hand! (Psalm 139:14)

The world and devil whisper “You will not make it, you will fail.” But the Word of God affirms, as God’s child “There is no failure in Christ.” Since I am his and he is mine I will not have to accept failure. (I John 4:15)

The world and devil say, “You are broken beyond repair, might as well accept you will never heal.”  But I belong to my Father and he has promised to restore me, to bind up my wounds, to fix me up again and again. (Isaiah  58:12)

The world and devil say “You are weak, pitiful, too fragile!” But because I am the Father’s joy and my Saviors promise I am not “weak, but I am made strong and I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Php. 4:13)

The world and devil say “looks like you’re going to have to do this all by yourself!” But we know our Father does not leave us nor forsake us. As long as we are his we always have him with us. (Heb. 13:5)

The world and devil say conform to us in your thinking and attitude; entertain negativity and doubt! But we know, in Christ we will not conform any longer to the world but instead be transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit (Rom. 12:1-2).

Thew world and devil say you are the same old person you used to be; you haven’t changed one bit! But we know in Christ we are a new creation, the old has gone and the new has come!” (Gal. 5:17)    

The world and devil say “No one loves you, in fact you are unlovable!” But we know that is not true. We belong to the Father and we are loved! the Father loves us unconditionally and with an everlasting love! (Jer. 31:3)

The world and devil say “You are lost, hopeless!” But we know our identity is in Christ and he went to the Cross of Calvary and secured our eternity and salvation. We are not lost but found; heaven-bound (John 3:16-17)

The world and devil say you will never break that bad habit; it is going to destroy or defeat you! But we know we have been crucified with Christ and that means he has give us strength to crucify our flesh and overcome every weakness that leads to sin, weakness or premature death. (Gal. 2:20)  

When we know our identity in Christ then we are not confused, confounded, turned away, defeated, overcome, or doubtful, but we know what we know. We do not have to listen to or believe the devil’s lies no matter where they come from or who speaks them on his behalf. There is power from on high when we set our mind and heart to live courageously through our identity in Christ Jesus. Every day the Lord wants us to remember and speak our worth, value, and identity, first to ourselves and then to anyone who would dispute or tell us otherwise. Let’s Pray   

Father, help us to live courageously in this manner, learning and always remembering our identity, in this way whenever the devil comes, however the world speaks to us we can push back, turn away, respond with truth and be confident in life and of faith. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen

Courageous Living: how will learning and remembering your true identity which is solidified in Christ help you live more courageously?        

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