Imagine you’re in the worse sandstorm of all time. The wind uses the sand to scrub away at you. The intensity of the blast separates little pieces of you and the wind carries them into the distance.
If this were a real sandstorm, your physical body couldn’t withstand it. But I’m talking about a cleansing from who you aren’t. After such a thorough cleansing, what is left of you?
Identity is what you can’t ever lose. Whatever is left is the true you. What got carried away wasn’t ever really a part of the true you.
These four dictionary definitions (compiled from yourdictionary.com/identity and dictionary.com/browse/identity) capture the essence of identity. Identity is:
- “Who you are.” This definition encapsulates what I mean by identity.
- “The set of characteristics by which you are definitively recognizable.” This definition clarifies that we can use identity to distinguish you from others.
- “Your unique characteristics held by no other person.” This definition clarifies that having an identity means you have something that no one else will ever have.
- “What remains the same, constant, persisting over time, under varying circumstances.” This definition provides the insight that identity must be permanently yours, or else it really isn’t part of you.
Take a moment and think about what can be taken from you or what you can lose. What is left?
I’m not talking about the things God has promised are yours. If you’re a Christian, you have eternal life and eternal relationship with God and others. Your identity is who you are. The “who that is you” will always be forever and ever. Remember this when you feel like life is ripping you apart limb by limb.
And I will put this third into the fire,
and refine them as one refines silver,
and test them as gold is tested.
They will call upon my name,
and I will answer them.
I will say, ‘They are my people’;
and they will say, ‘The Lord is my God.’”
God is helping you become the purest and truest version of who you are.
Listen to the Refiner’s Fire worship song. Ask God to help you know and experience your true identity.