March 8, 2023
From Jackie Payne
Each year I pick a word that God has laid on my heart to focus on for the next twelve months. For me, this is a much better decision than resolutions, which have a minimal chance of being kept. Normally, I don’t have to do much picking; God is pretty apparent in what He wants me to focus on in the next year. Past words have included grace, adventure (that year was fun!) and community. This year I struggled with the word; it didn’t come easily as in past years. I was caught between two words – explore (which sounded really fun and was my number one pick) and identity (which sounded less fun and like it was going to take more work). Guess which one God chose?
The first two books I read in January talked about identity, even though neither of them were specifically about identity, nor did I pick them because of that possible theme. “I hear you loud and clear, Lord!”
Last week as I was doing my devotional, I came across Psalm 125, which starts with, “Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be shaken but endures forever.” It hit me that the burden to be strong is not on those who trust in God. The burden to be strong (or any other attribute) is on God. The burden on us is to trust in Him.
I am strong…because He is God.
I am enough…because He is God.
I am loved…because He is God.
I am cared for…because He is God.
I am capable…because He is God.
My identity is not wrapped up in who I am or what I can or cannot do. My identity should and needs to be wrapped up in who He is. All the identification terms I have are inconsequential unless they start with God. Our lives are short, and we easily go back and forth between feeling like we’ve got it under control and feeling like a hot mess. We are shifting and forever changing, which means our earthly identity is shifting and forever changing. But…He isn’t. His identity is the foundation of the universe and everything we know. His identity is strong and never-ending. His identity is love and forgiveness. His identity is more than enough to cover us.
So today…let your identity be in Him. He’s big enough to be your strength, love, hope, safety, shelter or whatever else you need Him to be today.