Who God says you are is all that really matters.
The truth is that we all tend to allow ourselves to be defined by others. It starts when we are young, with our parents and family members. We grow up and start giving others permission to shape the way we see ourselves: teachers, bosses, spouse, friends, sometimes even total strangers.
But who really defines you?
There is only One who can most accurately and completely define you: the One who made you.
God specifically fashioned you into who you are. Your skills and abilities, your quirks, your personality, and all that makes you who you are. He put these in you for a purpose, and He has a great plan for how these can be used for His glory and for your blessing. And, I might add, He really likes you.
Wait, you say, but I have all this stuff in me that I don’t like. What about my weaknesses, my flaws, and failings? Well, let me assure you that none of these catch God by surprise. Let me further assure you that when God looks at you, through eyes that know no time, he sees you as he intended you to be in fullness and completeness. He sees past your flaws and failings and into your perfection.
And He never stops drawing you by the Holy Spirit toward Himself, so that you might discover your true identity.
Finding Out What God Says
If we are going to cooperate with the Holy Spirit and walk in the fullness of who God made us to be, it’s really helpful to know how He sees us. His is the only completely valid definition.
Here are two ways to approach our quest to see ourselves as God does.
The first is to understand what the Bible says about all of us as followers of Christ. There are tons of promises that shed light on God’s perspective and His deep emotions about you and me.
- We are completely forgiven (Ephesians 1:7)
- We are free from condemnation (Romans 8:1)
- We ravish his heart with one glance of our eyes (Song 4:9)
- We are deeply loved (John 17:23)
- We are one with Christ (Ephesians 2:6)
These are just a few of the amazing truths found in God’s Word about who we are in Jesus.
When God Speaks About You
The second part of understanding how God sees you is to grasp how He uniquely looks at you and you alone, in addition to the general truths we just mentioned.
The cool thing is that we can ask him to show us! God is a good Father, and He has really awesome and amazing things to say to us about who we are as His children. Have you ever asked him to show you and waited for Him to speak to your heart?
I’ve never heard the audible voice of the Lord, but there are many other ways in which I have heard him speak.
- The Word – specific passages that the Lord highlights to reveal truths that God wants to emphasize about me.
- Pictures – God has frequently used images in my mind to convey truths to my heart that go beyond words.
- Music and worship – God touches me deeply through music, because he made me a musician, and He has a musical spirit.
- Impressions – The Holy Spirit has imparted feelings and emotions to my heart directly.
- Dreams – I don’t dream often, but I have had a few that were clearly from God.
- Visions – similar to dreaming while I’m awake or a moving version of pictures.
Understanding the heart of God toward you may come from one of these, a combination of several ways, or something different altogether. The main thing is to seek and ask and be open to hearing in different ways. Believe that the Father really wants to speak to you, because your identity is hugely important to Him.
Others can also help you understand the heart of God toward you but use caution. Not everything that people tell you about your identity will necessarily agree with God. Test it. Pray about it, seek confirmation and clarity. Only receive from those whose spiritual discernment you trust.
Your Spouse’s Role
Because you and your spouse are one, he or she may know you better than anyone else. However, if they only define you by what they see in the natural, then they are only getting a partial picture.
Your spouse does not get to define who you are. They can agree with what God says about you and support you walking toward that, or they can deny it. But they aren’t free to define you outside of what God says about you.
I actually think it’s really important for us all to also ask God to show us how He sees our spouse – to earnestly seek revelation. But that’s my next post.