I am currently doing a 3-part workshop – Vision to Reality, through Open Spaces Africa.
The first part was about identity, purpose, and passion, which is rather fitting as identity has been a topic on my heart for a few weeks.
We were asked, “Where do you find your identity?”. The list contained work, past, service, God, to name a few.
I am a huge fan of personal development. I know the growth I will experience when I am honest with myself, willing to be challenged, and embrace the ‘uncomfortable’. After all, nothing good comes from a comfort zone.
Just remember: change can only come from self-realisation which requires honesty. You don’t need to announce it to anyone, you only need to be honest with YOURSELF!
You need to know that it will be difficult, very challenging, and at times you will want to give up (probably numerous times) BUT if you choose to push through, you will be amazed at the person you have become. Personal development is not for the faint-hearted.
Recently, my prayer changed from, “God change me”, to “God help me become”. (Sometimes we need to change how we pray. Become is gentler, more inviting, then change.) Bear with me, all the pieces will fall into place.
I am reading a book, Captivating, which has brought many things from my past to light. Just this week, I spent an entire day crying with all the memories coming back. I wrote down everything that came to mind, realising it was all the negative labels placed on me by others, that I believed.
I have been asking God to remove the negative beliefs/labels placed on me by others and myself, and that is what He did – He has brought them to light. What an amazing God we serve!
I had 2 visions about this, once I realised what had happened:
- Hands putting puzzle pieces together, gently.
- All the dead falling away from me, with a light shining on my face.
Even though it has been tough, and will probably still be for a while, I welcome the process. I know that I will become who God needs to be and that He will never leave me.
Through this all, it has become clearer as to why we need to find our identity in Christ. He is unfailing. He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. His feelings, thoughts, and promises never change towards us. There is no magic trick to this, it is work, constant effort.
Can you imagine how secure we would be if we truly found our identity in Christ?
Let me ask you a question: Why do we choose to only see and focus on the bad in ourselves? Is it because we don’t believe there is any good in us? Is it because others label us negatively? Or perhaps it is easier to name the bad?
One of the exercises we needed to do in the first part of the workshop, was to find out how others see us, well the good they see in us. I sent a message to 13 individuals (people I trust to be honest with me), 10 responded with messages, the other 3 responded with silence (no answer, is an answer). I asked how they see me, but I need them to focus on the good, no need to give anything bad time in the spotlight.
The answers I received were amazing and surprising. To hear how someone positively sees you is heart-warming, encouraging. But what stood out for me was that there were 3 common answers: 1.) helpful, 2.) child of God, 3.) funny. Knowing that others see me like this, makes me happy.
1.) I want to help people, it is who I am.
2.) I want people to know that I love God, He is the love of my life.
3.) I always want to make people laugh, people will always remember how you left the feeling, and laughter is the best medicine. Jokes are usually at my expense as I can never remember a joke.
So, how does God see you? I want to encourage you to dig deeper and find out for yourself but here is some scripture for you to start. This will take time. We are all a work in progress, and this won’t happen overnight. I have some biblical affirmations that you are welcome to download here.
- I am born again (I Peter 1:23)
- I am a child of God (John 1:12)
- I am the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13)
- I am the light of the world (Matthew 5:14)
- I am protected by the power of His name (John 17:11)
- I am set free by the truth (John 8:31-33)
- I am eternally secure in Christ (John 10:27-31)
- I am kept from the evil one (John 17:15)
- I am one with God the Father and Jesus the Son (John 17:23)
- I am filled with the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23)
Now, if God, the creator of the universe, sees you like this, why should anyone’s opinion of you matter?
Keeping it simply raw and real
Your sister in Christ
But you, my Lord, are a God of compassion and mercy; you are very patient and full of faithful love.