Don’t Let The World Steal Your Identity

A year after my father’s death, my family went through the remaining things that were part of his life on earth. Many of the items brought back memories of my father. I could look at an article of clothing and instantly remember him wearing it. I could pick up a tool and almost feel my father’s rugged hand in the worn grooves of the wood handle. To anyone else it was just stuff, but for me many of these things carried a strong identity to my father.

It made me wonder about what creates my identity in this world. What do people see when they look at me? Do they see in me what Paul describes in Ephesians 4:20 as “a God-fashioned life, a life renewed from the inside and working itself into your conduct as God accurately reproduces his character in you (NIV).” Do they see the rugged grip of God the Father on my life, the evidence of His work, or do they look at me and see my identity associated with the stuff of this world?

If we are not careful, the world can steal our identity. It’s a constant struggle not to create an identity based on where you live, what you drive, where you work, what you wear or the position you hold. Jesus warned us in Matt. 6:19-20, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.”

In the end, everything we accumulate in this life will be left behind for others. What will people remember about your life? Will they see a strong identity with God the Father and eternal treasures or will they only see a bunch of stuff that built an earthly identity? “The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life ( John 12:25).”

#ThrowbackThursday — This post originally published August 25, 2010

© 2010 CGThelen

4 thoughts on “Don’t Let The World Steal Your Identity

  1. I thank God for His works on me; it was my last day at work last Friday and I didn’t realize I have made an impact on some people for His glory. I pray that God will continue to mold all of us so that we can continue to bring the identity God has stamped on each one of us.

  2. One of the elder men in our small group Bible study challenged us last night as we began our study of 1 Peter: “Do you ever consider whose approval will ENDURE…man’s or God’s?” Oh, to live more God-approved so our light shines with purpose (Matt. 5:16). We are esteemed by Him so dearly through Christ…now to live in that reality.

    It’s a precious picture and great lighting, friend. From the barn?

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