Identity. Is that really the core issue with us? Are we all really just trying to operate according to what we think defines our worth?
Had an interesting conversation with a parent tonight after services. Her philosophy of parenting stems from identity – basically, you embed in your children’s mind from the very beginning that their worth and value come from God and in her estimation, that will solve a great deal of future rebellion – at least the severe sort.
Not sure how to process it. I mean, I agree of course (how could you not?), that our perceived worth and where we derive it from certainly will alter our behaviors. (i.e., if we think we have value only because we are pretty, then we’ll strive for exterior perfection or if we think our value is based upon how we are viewed by the opposite sex, well then….)
It makes me think about myself. From where do I ACTIVELY derive my personal self-worth? I know in my brain that I have value because I am made in the image of God. That’s a Sunday School answer – but how do I live that out? That may be the “right” answer, but do I live out that “right” answer? Or in my HEART do I feel less valuable when my clothes are less fashionable, or when my weight is STILL up after having a baby a year ago, or when I’m around “accomplished” women? Honestly, I’m not sure. I know that insecurity has to stem from confusion over our value – perceived value, that is. I’m just not sure where I fall on the totem pole. Sometimes I feel confident in who I am and in my place in the world, and then at other times I think, “Man….”
Sometimes it’s good to be motivated by outside sources – I see a woman who knows the Word, and it makes me want to be a better student of the Word myself. That’s healthy. But where does the line fall between improvement and insecurity??
Maybe when it comes to a place of whether or not we accept ourselves and the things that don’t really matter. Not talking about accepting sin in our life, or blatant unholiness, but accepting that we are on a journey and that we must always strive, realizing that we are being formed into the image of Christ, and that that journey is going to look different in each of our lives.
So, here’s to the journey!!
On a practical level, I’m going to make it my goal to be more aware of my thought life as it relates to identity. When I find myself slipping into insecurity (which my husband HATES and can spot a mile away), or being passive when I should be assertive (on a spiritual issue) I’m going to work harder at recognizing what I am basing my worth on at that moment……this should be interesting!
On a slightly separate note – when you want to think about identity in Christ alone read THIS article over at www.gracefullmama.com that I stumbled upon tonight (after drafting this!! Isn’t God’s timing something!). VERY good stuff….