A few years ago I went to Savannah, GA for a business conference. I ubered from the airport to the hotel and was greeted by a hotel employee who opened my door and got my bags for me. He welcomed me and walked me into the hotel, circumventing a long line at the reception desk.
He checked me in straight away and gave me his card saying that if I needed anything to give him a call on his personal cell. I looked at his card and he was the Hotel General Manager!
Clearly, he had me mistaken for someone of importance and I imagine some celebrity arrived later disappointed at the lack of attention they received.
Your identity is important.
It’s important to know who you are as your choices, behavior, and principles outpour from there.
It’s easy to get that backwards isn’t it?
We think our choices and behavior dictate our identity in Christ.
If we’re making good choices we think God is happy with us . . .
and if we’re making bad choices that day He’s not.
And we live in a culture that easily reflects that right?
UNCONDITIONAL COVENANT LOVE is rare in our world but it’s room temperature normal with God.
You do not earn God’s love by staying away from pornography.
You already have God’s love.
For Christians, we have an identity that calls us children and heirs of God because of the faith we place in His son Jesus and the sacrifice He made on the cross.
Not works demonstrating our faith . . . FAITH.
This is important to comprehend for two reasons.
- It DICTATES ROOT CAUSES that drive our behavior. We don’t do good works because we must earn God’s approval. We do good works because we have God’s approval. It takes pressure off us to always make the right choice and allows grace to permeate our decisions such that each poor choice can help us learn how to be stronger.
- Understanding our identity as Christians DICTATES HOW WE TREAT & COMMUNICATE WITH GOD when we mess up. If God’s love is not conditional on our good behavior, we have no need to run from Him when we sin. Instead, we can run TOWARD Him knowing that we’ll be met with love, grace, and mercy . . . not a trial re-evaluating our identity.
So today, practice your STOPs and your STARTs.
Not from a place seeking to earn God’s approval, but from a place seeking to demonstrate God’s approval.
Thoughts to Pray/Journal:
- What has your experience with Church or faith told you about this concept? How has that impacted your view of your identity in Christ?
- How have you behaved from a place seeking to earn God’s approval versus demonstrating God’s approval previously?
- What needs to change about you to maximize this reality in your life as a Christian?