Just who do you think you are?
Wrong information can get you lost very quickly in life. Especially if you aren't sure of who you are or you don't understand the purpose you have been given.
I know my own road to failure and every stop I made along the way. I know it so well I can drive it in the dark, backwards, with my eyes closed. Some folks provide perpetual reminders of the roads I’ve traveled and where I have made wrong turns. It’s like they have hacked the location services of my phone or GPS and think they know where I’m going next.
Those geocaching and maps in the wrong hands have added turbulence to my travels, my story, and life and the waypoints all come in the form of shame, guilt, doubt, fear, embarrassment, insecurity, humiliation, resentment, regret, and you get the picture.
Now, I like being mistaken for certain things for instance, being to young to have grandchildren or, I like being mistaken for being a mountain of a man because I am in many ways and in others I’m really not but, what I absolutely despise is the inability of many folks in Christianity to see each other through the lens of Jesus. There seems to always be a bad detour or a dead end offered by those who don’t want to really understand or discover the journey that the Lord has us on.
For instance, being mistaken as someone not worthy of being used in God’s kingdom is not only unbiblical but it’s a contradiction to the command to bear one another’s burdens in love. You can also contrast that perspective with those who will flatter you with empty characterizations of who they think you are but nevertheless they are the type of descriptions that feed my ego and pride or validate my status among the spiritually elite and my flesh gravities to the glory in self generated accolades because they can make me feel better about myself. This is why When I dialogue with others that I tell them that I thank the Lord for them and leave it at that.
Now, both instances whether negative or positive have the equal power to superficially shape what I believe about myself and my identity? Even the most positive characterizations I’m given, or award myself, have the power to define or disillusion my identity. The truth is, I can be a victim of not understanding who I really am in either direction, and have often lived in a state of mistaken identity during certain times throughout my life. Many of us have painful proof of this and it causes us to become professional in the business of marketing ourselves.
When I am mistaken for my age, it makes me think that I’ve unlocked the secret to longevity or that I am the picture of health when I know I am not! I always have the potential to become an idolatrous commodity that I work hard to sell in order to keep the compliments flowing and my stock rising.
In contrast, when I am referred to as a “liar”, “adulterer”, or a “failure”, it reminds me of my sin and incites deep emotions that range from guilt and depression, to rage and vengeance. It also spurs me on to contradict the negative names attributed to me.
If I am not careful, instinctively I become my personal PR man. In fact, it is painful proof of a sinister system of checks and balances.
I'm so glad God agreed with me!
In His economy, I am bankrupt. I am every label that has been attached to me: idolater, liar, adulterer, coveter, thief. The collateral I have collected is worthless against my debt. I have boldly labored as the sole proprietor in my own corrupt marketing business. I write checks as if I have endless resources. But in reality, even when I think I’m in the green I am completely in the red—broke and working a dead-end job selling a worthless product. Furthermore, because of my bankruptcy, God sent Jesus as my substitute, not only to pay my debt in full but to make a deposit of righteousness that will never run out.
All the titles we spend a lifetime trying to make or break, Jesus says “charge them all to me.” He announces his one job in Luke 4: to set the captives free. Free from our foolish attempts to fool ourselves and others. Free from the bondage of business gone bad. Free from the mishaps of mistaken identity. Free from the rise and fall of our stock. Free from the terrible titles we achieve in public or private. Free. He provides permanent labels of identity for us like; forgiven, righteous, accepted, beautiful, and beloved forever—no matter what. For me, being given His identity also gives me mine and declares exactly just who I think I am but how I roll!
Who do you think you are!
Food for thought!