Archive for December 2006

What is an Identity ?

December 10, 2006

 The other day I was thinking about my identity and who I am. I was thinking is an identity something we learn or is it something we just have? 

 If its something we learn or develop then our identity can change but if  its something innate then it is constant it does not change with who we are and what we do. If its constant and not about who we are or what we have can we really lose our identity?  These are questions which i have been praying into and intend to answer.

I have learnt   a lot about what I like and what I dislike, what things I enjoy doing  and what I enjoy doing.  I have tried all sorts of different activities from swing dancing, to  soccer, to photography, to fishing.  I have also spent time building relationships from work, from church, from different activities. I have learnt to identify things in people I really like and somethings that I see in people that I don’t think is so crash hot.

So who am I?

Well I was born in Sydney, into a christian family. I moved to a country city could Albury and lived there for 15 years or so. attending a local school there I then studied biotechnology at uni in Wollongong and later I moved to Canberra to start work in research. I now currently am working in a government department that deals with the collection of statistics. I am attending a church in Canberra called grace christian fellowship.

So is this my identity or part of it or is my identity something more ?

let me tell you something else about me. I love being amongst nature and taking photos. I also love to live an active lifestyle. I like to go to the gym and go swimming and play soccer. I am thinking of getting back into dancing one of these days and I have even thought about learning the guitar and a another language (German ?)

Is this my identity?

I love spending time with others, in fact more than anything else spending quality time with others means the most to me. If a friend really wants to show they care then spending time, really listening to me and acknowledging how I feel and respecting me as person is the greatest way they can show that.

 Is that my identity?

I am a passionate christian. I love to pray and spend time reading my bible. I love spending time with other Christian and sharing about Christ and what he has been doing in my life. I attend a group called the North Canberra Full Gospel Business Mens Fellowship Internation (long name hey). Its a group of men that meet to pray for Canberra and for one another- they are a really encouraging bunch.

 I also love christian worship songs and particularly enjoy listening to artists like Nicole Nordam or Michel W Smith or bands like Delirous.

 Is this who I am, is this what makes me  me ? if I stopped listening to bands, attending mens group would I lose my identity.

 I enjoy reading a lot and I am constantly learning new things through different books. At present I am reading the five love languages (its a really good book – I recommend it). I also enjoy attending different church based courses like valiant man or cleaning streams, I have learnt a lot through these courses and God has used them to help me grow.

So is this my identity? if I stopped reading and learning would I seize to exist to have an identity (I dont thinks so)

So What is my identity and Can I lose it ????

My identity is the character and inner qualities and destiny which god has given me. HE knew me even before I was born. psalm139: 13 says you did form my inner parts you did knit me together  in my mothers womb. He planned out my life and had a future mapped out for me. psalm 139:16  says your eyes saw my unformed substance, and in your book all the days of my life were written before they ever took shape, when as yet there were none of them. Yes I could make choices and I had a free while but I have certain  God given traits and desires which have  in part lead me to make the choices I have made. My identity is something I was predestined it was something that cant be taken away  its wh0 I am not what I do or say or how I act.

So what were all those things I described earlier my history, my likes and interests? How do they fit in?

These are just an outward expression of who I am they aren’t my identity if I stopped doing them I don’t seize to exist. If god told me to go to some far off country and -preach I would not lose my personality or my identity in fact I might discover apart of my identity that I never know I had .

So  what about people who feel they don’t know who they are they and feel lost they feel like they dont have an identity and don’t fit in? Have they lost there identity? Can your identity be taken away from you?

Many of us go through a phase of our life where we wonder who we are.  In fact some of us never really find out. The truth is each of us has an identity but often we  just haven’t come to a point where our eyes have been opened as to who we can be what our potential is and what our god given purpose is. Its hard though to find your God given purpose unless you first acknowledge there is a god out there and connect with him. He has a purpose for each of us, in him is fullness and purpose and meaning found. He created every part of you body, soul (emotions, will) and spirit (the bit that connects with god).

unless we find our god given identity we tend to try and find our identity and purpose in other things, money, possessions, achievements, friends, family,  activities. Some of those things can be good and can be an expression of who we are but they aren’t who we are they don’t lead to fulfilment in themselves. We weren’t created to be human doings but human beings. We were created to be the people  God made us to be. We are created for relationship, a relationship with a creator.  We have feelings we have thoughts we have interests but these don’t define us. True fulfillment comes from knowing who you are and your purpose and what (or rather who your hope is -Jesus) and responding out of that. Yes we have feelings and we are meant to express them, we have physical needs ie food and drink, were are meant to take care of our bodies but we don’t live for food or drink, or our emotions otherwise we can become impulse driven going from one craving to another.

 God created us to have a perfect relationship with Him to have fulfillment and love in our lives but with sin (disobedience to god, turning from gods will)  the relationship was broken and death, sickness and bad things entered the world.  The good news is that there is  hope. We can be secure and and live a fulfilled life, where we feel loved and have a sense of a destiny  if we believe in Gods  son Jesus whom he sent that we might have eternal life and that our relationship may be restored with the father.  Our relationship is more than just being saved he designed us to serve Him and to use god given traits to build other up and to be an encouragement to those around us.

Many of us though have lost our focus, we need to look up and refocus on Him, remember what He has done. We get tricked i think into putting our faith (leaning on) and building our life around other thing material things which can perish or achievements which can be surpassed.  When these things are taken away we are in upheaval we forget our identity is not in the things that pass away we were created to be eternal beings. Even our old bodies will pass away and we will be given a new body.

God wants us to know who we are in Him and realise our full potential  but it is up to us seek God to ask him to reveal the person he created us to be and ask him to help us to live it because ultimately we were created to have a relationship with him, to serve him.