It would have been more appropriate to start this Identity Project at the beginning. The irony that I did not, isn’t lost here.
Because I am perpetually prone to make life all about me.
Amy’s blog. Amy’s words. Amy’s speaking events. Amy’s brand.
Yes, ma’am. That’s where I sit this morning: on a messy pile of pride, thick enough to make me nauseous.
I have an upside down tendency to start with me…then later introduce God as some celebrated co-star in a self-scripted drama.
So it’s fitting to circle back now, and begin this Identity Project…at the beginning. Because who we are in Christ, is grounded in the truth of God’s original intent for his created people.
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1). Oh, yes, that’s the very beginning: a place in time where you and I were obviously not present. We were notably absent in the creative birth of the universe, and when we did appear on the scene, it was because God decided we would.
We were not even our own idea.
God formed us and shaped us as image-bearers of His glory (see Genesis 1:27), a glory which we cannot hold for our own. Yet I continually knock my head hard into a pride that tells me life is my own show. Which is why I was reminded today, to bring this ego train to a screeching halt.
This is the prequel, to the Identity Project, where we acknowledge the foundational truth of our identity in Christ. Though our individual shapes are cut uniquely, we share this core purpose:
Truth about you: You were made for God’s glory.
Scriptural evidence: “…everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.” Isaiah 43:7 ESV
What does it mean? It means that you and I were created to display the glory of God, so that He would be made known and praised. It means that our lives did not begin with us in the first place; and every effort we make to hoard glory will take us farther from who we were meant to be.
Life is God’s show, and you are an actor graciously given a part. When that truth is etched into the thread of your soul, you will become more fully the image-bearer you were made to be.
God delights in offering us a divine partnership chock full of opportunities to create with him…to bring light and salt and love with every foot fall we make on earthly soil. It just goes a bit awry when we confuse our role with his majority ownership. (In other words, we get a little too big for our britches.) (Yes, I just said that.)
Living it out: It’s not like we wake up on a Tuesday morning, and deliberately make plans to be a glory-stealer. Yet when we greet the day without the Real Beginning in mind, all of life is turned into a stage of our own production. And when ours becomes the starring role, God gets limited air-time, leaving life completely off balance.
A rightly re-oriented perspective will change your life today:
It is the difference between a melt-down over traffic, and abiding peace.
It is the difference between justifying your anger over their offense, and offering mercy instead.
It’s the difference between a spiking blood pressure over unfinished tasks, and over-riding joy regardless.
It’s the difference between an ugly tone of voice, and undeserved grace.
It’s the difference between despair over a failed performance, and the humility of knowing it’s not even about your performance in the first place. You just got invited to play a part.
Sometimes we need a soft place to land when pride knocks us off our high horse. Thank God that his grace is shaped like a soft place, because this morning was definitely one of my “sometimes”.
See you soon. I need to go dust off now.
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