Crosswalk.com aims to offer the most compelling biblically-based content to Christians on their walk with Jesus. Crosswalk.com is your online destination for all areas of Christian Living – faith, family, fun, and community. Each category is further divided into areas important to you and your Christian faith including Bible study, daily devotions, marriage, parenting, movie reviews, music, news, and more.

Intersection of Life and Faith

<< Encouragement for Today

Birth, Behavior or Bloodline - Encouragement for Today - May 27, 2013

  • 2013 May 27
  • COMMENTS

Glynnis Whitwer

May 27, 2013

Birth, Behavior or Bloodline
Glynnis Whitwer

"Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called 'uncircumcised' by those who call themselves 'the circumcision' (which is done in the body by human hands)—remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ." Ephesians 2:11-13 (NIV)

Some days I'm pleased with who I am. Some days I've really got it together. I start the day with some quiet time with just me and God. Normal morning hassles getting three kids ready don't bother me. Throughout the day I'm confident in my decisions and abilities.

Other days I exhaust and frustrate myself, especially when I'm not quite so pleasant. Annoyance starts with the first step out of bed if I've overslept, or woken up too early thinking about all I have to do. Graciousness evaporates as I allow life's demands to dictate my mood. Insecurities prompt defensiveness. Doubt overshadows faith.

One day I'm smiling and kind; the next day I'm scowling and grouchy. So which is the real me?

We can all struggle with wondering who we really are, especially when we fall short of who we really want to be. And when the answer seems to be different day-by-day, it's easy to give up even trying to change ... to be a better person.

To settle this question, I've had to dig deep. For I believe God wants me to know the answer. Knowing who I really am in God's eyes is a game changer. It changes my motivations, which changes my goals and inspires me to be consistent in who I am and how I act. God's truth about my identity serves as a filter for the world's lies and the judgment of others. It protects my heart from damage.

So where do we find this definition?

Are we defined by our birth? Are we who our parents are? Do their professional and personal successes or failures define us? Does it matter where we are born or to whom? Two of my children were born in an African war zone. Is that who they are?

Or are we defined by our behavior? For years I defined myself by achieving success and accomplishing tasks. The more checks to the left of the items on my to-do list, the better I felt.

There's a problem with both of these definitions. The first is out of my control. I have no say about where I was born or to whom. And it can give me a false sense of entitlement or discouragement. The second is undependable at best. Sometimes circumstances are out of control too. And even when my behavior is in my control, I can react from my human yuck-filled side.

Thankfully, there is another way to define ourselves. It's found in our bloodline as a child of God. A lineage that was bought for us through the death of Jesus as Ephesians 2 tells us. "But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ."

His sacrifice defines who we really are: Loved. Chosen. Treasured. Ransomed. Forgiven. Worth it. When I accept and believe these definitions for myself, I'm inspired to change. I believe it's possible.

Thankfully, we didn't have to be born in the "right" place, or behave "just so" to get this new identity. It's not based on our checkbook, scale or what our friends think of us. We receive it when we accept Christ as our Savior.

Birth, behavior or bloodline? I know which one truly defines me. Do you?

Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son to die for me, so that our relationship could be reconciled. Help me to remember that it's in Your bloodline that I find my true identify. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do You Know Jesus? Accept Him as your Savior and find out more on your identity in Him by clicking here.

John 1:1 tells us "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. [Jesus] was with God in the beginning." The best way to get to know Jesus—and discover our true identity—is by reading the Bible. Our team has come alongside you to unpack Scripture in the new NIV Real-Life Devotional Bible for Women, filled with 366 of our devotions. Pick up your copy by clicking here.

Reflect and Respond:
How would you act differently if your identity were found in Jesus' bloodline? If you truly knew you are loved, chosen, accepted?

Power Verses:
1 Timothy 2:5-6a, "For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people." (NIV)

Romans 3:23-25a, "... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith." (NIV)

© 2013 by Glynnis Whitwer. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
630 Team Rd., Suite 100
Matthews, NC 28105
www.Proverbs31.org

Archives

Follow Crosswalk.com