And every time, I think, “Yep. That’s who I am.”
An identification card gives identifying data about a person, but it’s usually the photo that is the clincher.
I think Christians have a spiritual ID card. It’s our identity in Christ.
Our spiritual ID card verifies who we really are. Our data is the truth God tells us, and our photo is the Imago Dei—the symbolic relationship between us and our Maker. We were created in His own image (Genesis 1:27).
If we’re not careful, we’ll let the world define us instead of the Lord. We’ll let our opinions and attitudes be shaped by the culture or unbelieving peers and family members.
Author Ken Boa wrote in Conformed to His Image, “Only when we define ourselves by the truths of the Word rather than the thinking and experiences of the world can we discover our deepest identity.”
We must expose ourselves to the truth of scripture about our identity in Christ so we can see ourselves as the Lord sees us. Understanding our identity in Christ, we can let go of our constant striving for acceptance and confidence in the flesh, and move forward in grace and freedom to become all God intends us to be.
Believers would be wise to align their hearts and minds with reality. We are new creatures in Christ and children of light, not darkness (Colossians 1:12-14; Ephesians 5:8-17; 1 Thessalonians 5:4-5).
I once studied who I am and what I have in Christ, and I concluded three things. In Christ I have a new identity, absolute security, and God-given dignity. These epiphanies were life-changing, affecting my thoughts, attitudes and behavior.
I discovered I am accepted in Christ and an heir with Him, complete in His fullness, dead to the power of sin, a unique workmanship of God with special purpose, a disciple on a mission and so much more.
Regarding “image,” I realized it is more important to look and act like Jesus than to be concerned about my image in the world. I didn’t need to compare myself with others; I only needed to seek God’s purposes for my life and act accordingly—to be obedient.
The apostle Paul said those who belong to God will be “conformed to the image of his son” (Romans 8:29)—that is why we were created. Jesus was to be the “firstborn among many brethren.” Paul was so committed to this idea, he worked hard among the Galatian Christians until he saw Christ was being formed in them (Galatians 4:19).
Part of being made in God’s image is our capacity to make free choices. We can either use that freedom to become more Christlike, or use it to pursue our own selfish agenda.
When Adam and Eve rebelled against the Lord, they marred the image of God in themselves and we also bear that damaged likeness. In other words we still bear God’s image, but also scars—the tragic effects of our sin (Romans 5:12; James 3:9).
I praise my Father God He redeemed us when we trusted in Christ and He continues to redeem us.
I know He is working to restore His original righteous image in me (Ephesians 4:24) through faith in Christ. My part is to trust and obey.
I want the world to look at my spiritual ID card and not just see me, but also the Lord I love shining out through my life.
How does your spiritual ID card resemble Jesus today? What might be hindering others seeing Jesus in you?