Here’s a worship song by Hillsong I’ve been listening to a lot lately titled, “Who You Say I Am.” (From album “There is More“). It really captures something that’s perhaps the most important thing we can know about ourselves—our identity in Christ. Sadly, many lovers of Jesus don’t see themselves the way God sees them. They see themselves based on what everybody says about them. They are circumstance and culturally led…rather than Spirit led. They identify themselves based on the “I am not’s” instead of the Great “I Am.”
Frankly, after 40 years of following Jesus, I don’t really care what people say about me. I care about what God says about me. And He says I’m His son, His child, and He is my Father. I do not live by what others tell me but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God (Matt.4:4). As Eugene Peterson put Paul’s words so well in the Message Bible:
4-7 But when the time arrived that was set by God the Father, God sent his Son, born among us of a woman, born under the conditions of the law so that he might redeem those of us who have been kidnapped by the law. Thus we have been set free to experience our rightful heritage. You can tell for sure that you are now fully adopted as his own children because God sent the Spirit of his Son into our lives crying out, “Papa! Father!” Doesn’t that privilege of intimate conversation with God make it plain that you are not a slave, but a child? And if you are a child, you’re also an heir, with complete access to the inheritance. (Gal.4:4-7 MSG)
And the thing is, how we interpret ourselves is how we will interpret the world. If I think God is angry with me, or that His love is conditional to my performance, that’s exactly how I will relate to others. But God loves me…and you…exactly the same as He loves Himself.
How much do you think God loves God?
“I love each of you with the same love that the Father loves me. You must continually let my love nourish your hearts. (John 15:9 TPT)
I don’t “nourish my heart” with what I’m not, I nourish it with God’s love.
Love is ever shaping me and making me who I already am but never dreamed I could be as I follow Him.
“If you stick with this, living out what I tell you, you are my disciples for sure. Then you will experience for yourselves the truth, and the truth will free you.” (John 8:31-32 MSG)
If my life is driven by fear, that’s exactly how I will live. But His perfecting love drives out all my orphan-hearted fear (1 John 4:18). I am not an orphan on my own in this world. I am His child and my Father’s house is where I belong…today, tomorrow, and forever.
In my Father’s house
There’s a place for me
I’m a child of God
Yes I am
And so are you…if you will accept it.
The greatest forces set against you and me are not principalities and powers but the belief systems we hold between our ears. These include arguments and everything else that exalts itself against the knowledge of God (2 Cor.10:3-5). We’ve been empowered to leave the confused and meaningless morass of darkened cultural mindsets for the freedom and transcendence of our true identity, purpose, and destiny in the One in Whom all things hold together and consist (Acts 17:28; Col.1:16-17):
5–6 For it was always in his perfect plan to adopt us as his delightful children, through our union with Jesus, the Anointed One, so that his tremendous love that cascades over us would glorify his grace—for the same love he has for his Beloved One, Jesus, he has for us. And this unfolding plan brings him great pleasure!
7 Since we are now joined to Christ, we have been given the treasures of redemption by his blood—the total cancellation of our sins—all because of the cascading riches of his grace. 8 This superabundant grace is already powerfully working in us, releasing within us all forms of wisdom and practical understanding. 9 And through the revelation of the Anointed One, he unveiled his secret desires to us—the hidden mystery of his long-range plan, which he was delighted to implement from the very beginning of time. 10 And because of God’s unfailing purpose, this detailed plan will reign supreme through every period of time until the fulfillment of all the ages finally reaches its climax—when God makes all things new in all of heaven and earth through Jesus Christ. (Eph.1:4-10 TPT)
So, I’m going to sing this song and remember who God says I am. I invite you do to the same.
I am chosen not forsaken
I am who You say I am
You are for me not against me
I am who You say I am