Society is in an odd place these days. There seems to be a disconnection between how some people identify themselves and who they really are at their core – on the DNA level. The most famous examples in recent years might be Rachel Dolezal, a white women who identified as black, and Bruce Jenner, who was genetically a man, but identifies as a woman. Let’s not get into debate or name calling about the choices Dolezal and Jenner have made or what drives them.
Instead, let’s think about what we, as Christian women can learn about an identity crisis. Let’s consider, dear sisters, whether or not there is a disconnection between who we identify to be and who we really are at our core – on the spiritual DNA level.
If we have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, God identifies us as His children and co-heirs with Christ. Romans 8:16-17 [KJV] The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together.
We are changed from what we were before into a new person – a new creation in Him – at the moment of our commitment, baptism and receiving of the Holy Spirit.
However, we cannot hope to “pass as” children of God and followers of Christ. We must actually live as children of God and followers of Christ so that others will identify us as Christian too. Matthew 7:16-21 [NIV] By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. We must show fruit that confirms who we are now because of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Perfection is not required, but we must be striving for it. In my personal experience, it also shows that I am a Christian when, after I trip up, I humbly admit being wrong and apologize. That can be pretty unique behavior in this Satan-led world where people never want to admit they are wrong. Of course, I should be living my new life and tripping up less and less. However, until that moment when I am changed or resurrected at Christ’s return, I am going to have these moments where I need to show Christian behavior in the wake of my own sin and mistakes.
It is the same when others hurt us – giving a Christ-like reaction of humble, true forgiveness is also a way to show who we really are now. This reaction can be something pretty unique in the world as well and something that identifies us as different. It shows that I am different from the world around me and from who I was before the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
We need to work to replace the human, carnal parts of who we have been (human, carnal), with new parts, related to who we are now and who we are becoming (spiritual). We do it to because we really are now someone different from who we were when we were born in this flesh into this mortal life.
Where there was hate, it must be replaced with love. Where there was fear, it must be replaced with faith. Where there was striving there must now be peace. Where there was pride, there must now be humility. Where there was disobedience, there must now be obedience.
Dolezal and Jenner have some kind of struggle going on in their minds or hearts. Jenner even went as far as changing some body parts. I am not trying to approve or give validity to or glorify their choices. I’m simply saying we can use them as a learning moment.
We must not forget what we see in the mirror every day. James 1:23-24 [ESV] For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. Rather, we must be changing that image every day by living out who God sees us to be.
Sisters, we must not be anything other than crystal clear about who we are or who we are destined to be. This must effect the way we live each day.
God says you are His child and heir. He has given each of us new, spiritual DNA by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit so that how He sees us and who we really are now becomes truer every day.
Identify with that.
I welcome your thoughts, comments and questions. You can write me at Nancy@DynamicChristianMinistries.org