Who Am I?

Growing up I loved cheesy Kung-Fu movies. Perhaps one of my all-time favorites was the 1998 Jackie Chan flick, Who Am I? Jackie Chan was a special operative who loses his memory at the beginning of the film. Throughout the movie, he seeks to learn who he was and at the same time uncovers a plot to sell an extraterrestrial compound to a powerful arms dealer. The movie is filled with great stunts and tons of cheesy fighting as Jackie, often hilariously, tries to learn his identity and constantly asks “Who Am I?” At one climatic scene, Jackie runs up to the top of a hill and yells the question at the top of his lungs. As funny and cheesy as the movie is though, the question about our identity is one that people often wrestle with. “Who am I?” “Why am I here?” There’s nothing cheesy about struggling with that.

Suffering often takes things away from us that we weren’t meant to lose.

This question is compounded by suffering because it forces us to wrestle with questions about our worth and value. Suffering often takes things away from us that we weren’t meant to lose. It makes us question our worth because if we really had worth, surely this wouldn’t have happened. I lost this thing or person and now my life isn’t complete. 

In 2011 my dad took his life after being faced with the consequences of his sinful actions. Many of those sinful decisions had affected me while I was growing up but I was unaware of them. To some degree, I thought life was pretty normal. (And much of my life was normal. I have an amazing mother who fought so hard for us kids.) But for the first time in my life, I was confronted with the reality of who my dad was. In some ways, a lot of things began to make sense. In a lot of other ways, I felt like the rug got pulled out from underneath me. Now that I am a dad myself, I often wrestle with my worth as a father. Not believing I have a good example as a father, I struggle with whether or not I can be a good dad. Am I cut out for this? Or will the cycle of brokenness continue? So much of who we are is based on our dads (for better or worse) and I regularly find myself wrestling  with who I am. But to be honest, all of those questions are shadows. As real as the circumstances of my life are, I have a stronger reality with who I am in Christ. 

We have a better foundation to anchor our lives to than our circumstances.

Any questions you or I have about our worth or identity are echos of a life without Christ. The quest for self-validation and self-verification is over. We know who we are. We know why we are here. I may not have a good example from my earthly father, but I do have a perfect example in my Heavenly Father. He is the perfect example of how to raise my children, because he is raising me! Because of what Jesus has done on the cross for our sin, we are forever accepted in the beloved. We have a better foundation to anchor our lives to than our circumstances.  I am God’s son. You are God’s child. That is who we are. It’s natural for you to wrestle with questions of worth and value, especially because of the suffering you may be facing. But be sure you answer that question with the truth of Scripture. Are you valued? Do you have worth? Are you known and loved? The answer is a resounding yes. 

Ephesians 1:3-6 Blessed is the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavens in Christ. For he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless in love before him. He predestined us to be adopted as sons through Jesus Christ for himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace that he lavished on us in the Beloved One.

Ephesians 3:17b-19 I pray that you, being rooted and firmly established in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love, and to know Christ’s love that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

Are you valued? Do you have worth? Are you known and loved? The answer is a resounding yes. 

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