By Chad Young
I think sometimes I forget who the real Chad is. As a believer in Christ, my thoughts often go awry when I don’t spend time praying or studying my Bible daily. I forget that my identity is in Christ. I beat myself up through my selfish thoughts and attitudes, or I forget I have a new life in Christ and become disobedient to God.
When we find our identities in other things besides Christ, such as our careers, athletics, our friends, our social networking, or even our sexual desires, we forget who we really are. We pursue fantasies and lifestyles that the world has to offer but that are the polar opposite of the Christian lifestyle depicted in the Bible.
Whether we’re plagued by guilt over what we are doing that we know isn’t good for us or living in rebellion, we are holding back on our true identity that’s found in Christ. In short, we all have an identity crisis that needs attention at times. Living our lives with a mistaken, borrowed identity of the person we are without Christ isn’t really living life at all; it causes terrible frustration, confusion, and danger to us and to those we love and do life with as well.
An important verse I’ve memorized to help me to remember my identity in Christ is Colossians 1:18: “And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent (ESV).”
Jesus didn’t die for us so that he could just be a passenger in our lives. He really didn’t. He came and died for us so that he could be in the driver’s seat. When we received Christ as our Lord, we surrendered control of everything – our hopes, our dreams, our careers, our sexual desires, and yes, even our money. By entering into God’s family and becoming an adopted child of God, we agreed to let Christ be preeminent.
Without Christ being preeminent in our lives, we can’t please God nor find our identity in anyone or anything else. We can only find our true identity and bear fruit that’s of the best kind, when our lives are in Christ. With Christ, everything changes and we no longer find ourselves frustrated, spinning our wheels, trying to attain something that’s out of our reach. When we find our identity in him, we find real happiness, an inner peace, and the satisfaction our hearts desire.
We don’t have to wait until we experience pain and suffering to remember our identity is in Christ and turn to the Lord for direction and counsel. He’s waiting right now to be in the driver’s seat of our lives and to give us the joy and adventure we were created to have. Will you turn to God now and experience his love, or will you wait until you have a crisis and suffer great pain? Either way, God’s ready for us. He loves us and will always be faithful, even when we’re unfaithful to him.
About the Author:
Chad Young is the author of Authenticity: Real Faith in a Phony, Superficial World, available at Amazon. Chad is Cru Global’s national director over the southeast region, leading the ministries in FL, GA, AL, and MS. He resides in Atlanta, GA, with his wife Elizabeth and their four young children. He has served on the staff of Campus Crusade for Christ for twelve years. He holds an undergraduate degree from Clemson University and a graduate degree from Georgia Tech; Chad worked in the paper industry for 6 years before going into full-time ministry. He has a passion for helping students learn what it means to have an authentic relationship with Christ.