“The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what he does for us, not by what we are and what we do for him.” (Romans 12:3, Msg.)
Well that explains a lot. No, really, it does.
For most of my life, I’ve been using the absolute wrong criteria to figure out who I am and why I’m here. I’ve been looking for my identity in my work, my achievements, and my accomplishments. I’ve been looking for myself in the items crossed off my to-do list; in my long-range goals and my big plans; in my strategies, action items and milestones. I’ve been looking to define myself by what I’ve done and by what I’ve failed to do.
And I’ve come up short every single time, year after year after year.
You know why, right? Because this whole time, I’ve been looking in the wrong places. I’ve been looking to myself and to external criteria to figure out who I am, rather than to God, who knew me and identified me long before the beginning.
The only way we can know who we are at the very core of our being is to know and understand ourselves in God.
God is creator. God is love. God is everything and in everything. And therefore, God is in us. His love is in each one of us, and we are defined by that love. We are defined and identified by God in us.
This, friends, is how we understand ourselves: created by God, made in the image of God, loved by God, embodiment of God.
Believe that, know it deep in the very center of your being, and you will know who and what you are.