Unprecedented freedom is found when we accept that nothing & no one determine our identity but God.
That truth is definitely not easy to accept. The reality that God loves us — when we are our most real, authentic, and raw — simultaneously confuses and encourages me. In our society, we are constantly bombarded with the commands to conform and adjust to what other people deem acceptable.
Social media, although I am not against it, can be a major weapon in the hands of the Enemy. Perfectly-retouched models and celebrities overtake our feeds, and our screens can become a breeding ground for comparison. When we constantly compare ourselves to those around us, in person or online, we allow our joy and security to be stolen.
For a long time, my identity was in the acceptance of other people. I have allowed others who are more attractive, athletic, or intelligent than me to, whether they knew it or not, dictate my confidence. Satan’s lies of “You’re not good enough,” and “You will never have a future” cluttered my mind and heart. Why was I allowing my identity to have its source in anything other than God?
Genesis 1:27 says, “For God created mankind in His own image, in the image of God He created them; male and female He created them.” This verse proves that each person on the face of this earth has undeniable, unimaginable value. If the God of the universe says it’s true, it’s true! This truth is an incredible weapon we can use to combat the lies of the Enemy that try to demean who we really are.
Even the most powerful lies of the Enemy cannot chip away at the solidity of our identity if its foundation is in God, the Rock of Ages.
With that, it becomes easier to face the temptations to conform to what society tells us we should be. God’s declarations to us about ourselves ensure our present and future identity, even if we have a past of comparison, doubt, and insecurity. Old threats — more talented, attractive or put-together people — fade in the light of the truth that Jesus loves our authentic selves.
Because of His promises, the need to “measure up,” retouch or compare ourselves is eradicated, and the freedom to be raw, true, and authentic is ours. What a necessary and cherished reminder: God genuinely loves us! He doesn’t want us to put on a mask, whether in front of Him or in front of others. We don’t have to change who we are to get God to love us.
With those promises comes responsibility, however. We are now charged to be radically real as we commune with God and interact with others. Hypocrisy is not an option. Being fake is not an option. God’s Word makes it clear that being authentic is an act of service to Him. It is our responsibility to be genuine about our struggles, desires, and victories, because we do not allow anyone else’s opinion but God’s to define who we are.
There is now no need to be afraid of what others think. Our identities are found solely in the promises of God: we are loved, valued, and created in His image. So, we can find security. We can find stability. We can find confidence. We are free to be ourselves and find ourselves because of the wonderful promises of God that dictate our identity.
My best friend’s mom has this posted on the wall in their house. My prayer is that this would become our anthem as we choose to be radically real and be the men and women God has created us to be!
“Too long in a box
Too long not loving what I see
Unsatisfied with the status quo
While losing the real me
No longer would I sit back
Be fake, be hurt, be quiet
I had to heal… This was real
Something had to change
I found Him; I found me!
Realized I was purchased
Would be me on purpose!
Be happy; be free
Be you… On purpose!”
- Will-Franklin Eller, GA
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/wf_eller