My first identity crisis hit at age 25. I was sitting in a London airport in the middle of the night waiting out an eight-hour layover for my flight to Edinburgh, Scotland. It was to be my new home for the next few years while my husband worked on his PhD in New Testament studies. I’d never seen Edinburgh before, and I had no idea why the Lord was taking me there. I’d left a job I loved, a city I loved, and people I loved. All I could see was what I was leaving.
The tears began to flow, so I nuzzled into my sweatshirt that was acting as a makeshift pillow, not wanting my husband to see me crying. I knew this move was difficult for him too, precisely because it was difficult for me.
Over the next weeks and months, waves of insecurity would overtake me with the simplest of questions: “What do you do?”
Honestly, I had no idea. Unanchored from what had shaped my sense of identity, I felt lost. I wasn’t a missionary. I wasn’t a mother. I didn’t have any role other than being a wife. And, most days I didn’t feel like I was doing a great job at that either. I’d been defined by my job, ministry, and deep-rooted friendships. Now, I felt alone and purposeless, unsure how to answer the question, “Who am I?”
Perhaps you’ve experienced a similar situation. Unwanted circumstances often expose the places we’ve anchored our identity outside of Christ. While I felt lost, it was actually the Lord directing me to find something better, something secure—an anchor that held fast regardless of circumstances and seasons. I was finding my identity in doing. He wanted me to find my identity in being. Rather than find significance in what I was doing for God, I needed to experience the freedom of finding my worth in what God had done for me.
The question I needed to answer most was not “Who am I?” but “Who am I in Christ?”
I still need reminders. It’s easy to fall back into old patterns, forgetting the good news of my identity in Christ. That’s why I’m excited to share with you about a new book we’ve been working on over the past few months at TGC. It’s called Identity Theft and it released at TGCW18 last week (and it’s available on Amazon). It’s a multi-authored volume, and the purpose of the book is threefold:
- Expose the false lies we often believe about our identity.
- Illuminate the truth of who we are in Christ.
- Consider what it means to live a transformed life.
Some of my favorite authors agreed to write on this topic, and together they’ve filled this book with wisdom and truth. Here’s a list of the authors and their topic:
Chapter 1 Jen Wilkin—Free: Rescued by Grace
Chapter 2 Hannah Anderson—Reflection: Made in God’s Image
Chapter 3 Courtney Doctor—Child: Beloved by the Father
Chapter 4 Melissa Kruger—Saint: Redeemed by the Son
Chapter 5 Jasmine Holmes—Fruitful: Filled with the Holy Spirit
Chapter 6 Megan Hill—Member: Connected to the Church
Chapter 7 Trillia Newbell—Beautiful: Clothed in Splendor
Chapter 8 Betsy Childs Howard—Servant: Reaping a Reward
Chapter 9 Lindsey Carlson—Worshiper: Shining Brightly in the Darkness
Chapter 10 Jen Pollock Michel—Citizen: Longing for Home
I hope this book will be a faithful reminder of what God has done for us in Christ. I encourage you to grab a friend and go through the discussion questions together. Memorize the verses and fortify your mind with the truth of God to help you fight the lies of the enemy. Remember who you are and live in the freedom of what Christ has done for you.
For more, here’s a trailer about the book: