"I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me." Galatians 2:20 ESV
Recently I asked my Sunday school students how they introduce themselves to new people. Beyond the basics (name and age), their initial responses included what they like to do, family and where they live. They also said they might mention going to church and where they attend.
Many of us would respond in similar ways, with the addition of our jobs and any committees of which we are a part. Like them, we root our identities in what we do and who we know. Even
when sharing their testimonies, many fixate on which church they attended when and at what age they were baptized.
These are all good and integral parts of our lives, but should they be what define us? Only with some prompting did my students understand the role Christ plays in our identity—that their lives are nothing apart from Him and their relationship with Him defines every other aspect of their lives.
What about you? Is your relationship with Christ the first detail you share when you meet someone new or do you, too, need prompted? In a world where far too many root their identities in people, possessions, statuses and careers, we need to embody the joy, freedom and responsibility that comes from an identity in Christ Jesus.
In Philippians Paul exhorts us to share in Christ's life, suffering, death and resurrection (3:10-11). Jesus Himself prayed for us to abide in Him, to eternally secure ourselves to Him, bound together by the healing salve of the Holy Spirit (John 15).
We as God's people are given a fixed, blessed identity in Christ. We need not scramble for alternatives or latch on to society's ever-changing labels. We were picked up out of the dust and God is inviting us to join Him as He continues this work in others.
Is there a young person in your life thirsting for blessed assurance? Are they weary from trying the world's labels? Have you listened to God about them? In other words, are you in tune with the Holy Spirit's leading? Do you see who He is leading you to, someone He is already working in and is now asking you to join Him in reaching?
We as God's people are given a fixed, blessed identity in Christ. We need not scramble for alternatives or latch on to society's ever-changing labels.
Think of those in your family and your friends' families, but don't limit it to just nonbelievers. Look within the body of Christ. Just because someone claims to be a Christian doesn't mean they have an all-in relationship with Him. There are too many people within our own body whose identities are not in Jesus. They may look like a healthy branch firmly fixed to the Vine, but in reality are a dying branch on the verge of falling off.
Who is the Holy Spirit guiding you to engage in a conversation? What questions does He want you to ask them? What part of your brokenness is He inviting you to share with them?
Far too many young adults have an identity crisis, even those within our church walls. Let's walk alongside the Holy Spirit in His work to reclaim them for Himself and graft them to the Vine. It's the best thing we can do with this life God has given us.
English Standard Version Bible. (2001). Crossway Bibles.