“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light.”
1 Peter 2:9
I know I am not alone when I say that there are times when I don’t know how to keep my eyes set on the fact that my identity is in Christ. I am aware of my calling as His own. I am aware of who I am in Him. But there are days I cannot feel it enough to actually identify with it. When you are not the best at all of it, it is hard to get your mind around how He can use you. The need to be good enough, capable enough, worth something for the kingdom because of what I can bring to the table: this is the fleshly mindset that traps me. But there is no true security in “the real me” if it is at all based on who I am and not wholly on who He is.
On these days, I find myself having to go back to the very beginning and start from scratch. As I walk with the Lord, in this calling, I am constantly learning and relearning. Believing and following Christ is a whole new world. We are not taught to surrender who we are. This culture teaches us the opposite of this. But it trains us to find identity and worth in what we do, what we own, who we know, what we look like, or the control (we think) we have. If I have created my own identity out those things, in anything apart from Christ, I have enslaved myself to that false identity.
We are granted the highest honor of being able to say that we are His child, and we can allow that to simply be enough. We can trust that He is enough to base our entire worth on. We can find our confidence and wholeness in Him. Projecting the desired image of strength instead of undesirable vulnerability does not bring healing to the heart and rest to the bones. Striving to look or act or be a certain way does not make much of Jesus. Lay it down for something greater. More of Him, a richer testimony of who He is and what He has done, fulfillment in the depths of your soul because you know you do not have to work and can simply give from an overflowing of what He’s already given to you and filled you with; Himself.
So the things that you are the best at, gifted in, the most capable of, learn to use those things to proclaim Him. After all, He is the one who has given them to you and they are not meant to be left undiscovered and unused. The things you are mediocre at, the things that will not impress anyone or that you’d rather hide, He will use to proclaim Himself as well. Your stories. Your experiences. Your very average abilities. These all glorify Him as well. And our life for His ultimate glory is all that matters in the end.
He called us, the church, out of darkness and into his light for a very specific purpose: to proclaim him. Not to be the best. Not to glorify ourselves through the gifts He’s given us. Not to display what we are able to do and hide what we are not able to do in order to glorify Him, as if He does not redeem every part of us. Let that pressure go. He simply wants us to declare His praises from the overflow of hearts that love Him. Talk about him, sing about him, write about him. Use whatever you have.
He will use us in spite of us. And that is the best news I can give you. Embrace your smallness, your minuteness, your incapability and mediocrity. You will not be good at everything you put your hand to. You will not be the best at most things. You will fall short in a lot of areas. There are things that will always be a work in progress, growing, mainly yourself. And that is okay. Those things are not who you are. Those things do not define you. Those things are not your identity. Being found in Him frees us up to focus our energy on declaring Him instead of worrying about who we are and what image we should be portraying. We were called specifically for the purpose of declaring Him, because we know we are safely found in Him.