My story of knowing and walking in my identity in Christ started very early as a fresh teenager. To give you some background, I was born and raised in a pastor’s family in Jammu, a city north of India. Growing up, I had a fair amount of exposure to the Church and Christianity as I knew it then. As a young boy, I was a cheerful, carefree, inclusive person who never really thought or had any problems with the issue of identity, As young kids aging from 8 to 10-year-olds, my older brother, a few friends and I used to have children’s meetings in our home church. I can still recall it as if it was yesterday how, during one summer break in our school, while all the kids were home playing and having fun, we started these gatherings where we would just invite a bunch of friends and kids from church and sing worship songs, have short sermons, play and just have a lot of fun together. Little did we know that these meetings would grow in number from 5 to almost 60 kids meeting every day praying, worshiping, and enjoying the goodness of God for the entire summer break. Now when I look back at that time, I think how free we were with no worries, agendas, or goals to be achieved. We were just a bunch of kids who had no other intention but to have fun together and pursue God. As Christians, we are called to “grow up to be more like children”.
“Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will not enter it”.Mark 10:14-15
But as a young teenager, I started to notice how older people act differently around certain people. It showed me that there are certain people who are more important than others or have a higher value, which of course is a broken understanding and this new revelation that I had gotten led me to have an identity based on people’s opinion and comparison. In my mind, you could either be better/more important and valuable than someone or be worse/less important and valuable. I was never vocal about these thoughts, but this was my thought process every time I met someone new. This went on for years and led me to have a very unstable identity and a deep inner struggle, that I had no idea how to deal with it. But through the years, I had developed a great skill of covering the whole issue by putting on different masks of fake identities and pretending that everything was just fine. I would say comparison is like a slow poison that shrivels our being and leaves us in a position of insignificance and worthlessness.
My story of redemption started after being sick and tired of living up to people’s expectations and opinions because it was never enough. I was never enough. The desire to get out of this inner struggle was the seedbed for a new foundation that was rooted in the word of God and His view of my life. As I began to look into the word of God, I saw that it was filled with scriptures of how God sees us and what He thinks of us, and letting these truths and realities from the word of God define me rather than people’s appreciation and my own view of myself, was the pinnacle of transformation in my life.
Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God.Galatians 4:7
For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.Galatians 3:26
When the fact that I am a child of God registered in my spirit and soul, it changed everything about my life. People’s opinions about me didn’t matter anymore. I had no one who I could compare myself with because I realized that I am uniquely designed and created in the image of my Father. Comparison and self-doubt became irrelevant.
I believe the key to walking freely and strongly in your identity in Christ is in knowing that God is your Father and everything that belongs to Him, belongs to you. The voice dominating your mind will be the one driving your life. The day you choose to intentionally read and fill yourself with the word of God, you give God the opportunity to deeply transform your inner being into the likeness of His Son, Jesus Christ. The Word has the power to drive and sustain our lives if only we believe what it says. So, now the decision is yours: will you continue to view yourself through the lens of this world’s belief system, or will you choose to identify yourself according to the word of God?