Do You Know Where to Find Your True Identity?

Do You Know Where to Find Your True Identity? Identity in Christ.

Stifled little girl giggles were muffled behind the small hand clapped over her mouth. She couldn’t help letting them escape and I heard her as I passed the coat closet in the hallway. I opened the door and saw her tiny feet and little legs beneath the coats she was standing behind. My sister and I were two bundles of little girl energy and we were playing hide and seek. We were in preschool then.

We only had to the count of ten to hide. We exploded out of the front yard and into the back, scattering behind bushes, tree trunks, and whatever else we could find. We were 10ish and 12ish, my sister and I, along with all the neighborhood kids playing with us. It was a game of Kick the Can and oh, how we loved it! The very best part of that game was the hiding.

I was a teenager now, and I was still hiding. Only now, it was a different kind of hiding. It was not the fun and carefree kind of hiding that I had played as a child.

I don’t remember exactly when this different kind of hiding started, or why. Maybe it was because I wanted approval. Maybe it was peer pressure. Maybe I was afraid. Most definitely it was my personality that caused me to look at the world the way I did back then.

Regardless, it was in those years that I began comparing myself to others. And somehow, in my mind, I didn’t measure up.

That’s when the thief showed up. I wouldn’t recognize her until years later, but she began to do her work, quietly and efficiently, with hardly a care in the world, because I wasn’t paying a bit of attention.

Her name was Perfect and she really enjoyed the game of hide and seek too – mostly the hiding part, because she sure didn’t want anyone to do any seeking.

Perfect knew I was a good girl so she made me think I had to live up to a whole bunch of self imposed unrealistic expectations. I had to drive on and keep going and doing. I didn’t want to let anyone down, after all.

Perfect knew I wanted approval so she taught me how to people please. Saying no was almost impossible. I felt responsible for everything and hid the fact that I was feeling frustrated and overwhelmed.

Perfect really wanted me to have things all under control so I kept playing her hiding game and didn’t tell anyone that I didn’t always feel like I knew what I was doing. I faked confidence and I wouldn’t ask for help.

Perfect wanted me to be, well, perfect. So I hid my flaws and didn’t talk about my shortcomings much, not even to God. The only time I did think about them was when I was putting myself down, as I repeated in my mind the lies that Perfect had told me.

I wasn’t being real because I wasn’t able to let go of who I thought I needed to be. I was wearing a mask that covered up the best of who I really was.

Perfect was a thief and she had stolen my true identity. And because I didn’t recognize her, I just let her continue to come back for more. This went on for years. It started in my teen years and followed me into adulthood.  This kind of thinking became a cycle in my life. It had been with me so long that it seemed normal to me.

But one day, many years later, I decided I didn’t want to hide anymore. I was too tired to keep trying so hard. I was totally exhausted and at the bottom of myself. I didn’t even know who I was anymore.

It was in that low spot in my life that I finally realized that Perfect had made me the victim of identity theft. I was shocked when I discovered this huge crisis in my life.

So I turned to God and quietly asked Him what I needed to do. I felt Him speak to me through a verse I was reading that day that I had never really noticed before although I surely had seen it many times.

When You said, “Seek My face,” My heart said to You, “Your face, LORD, I will seek.”
Psalm 27:8 (NKJV)

So instead of hiding, I began to look up, and I began to seek Him in a deeper way.

After lots of prayer and time spent in God’s Word, the truth from inside the pages of my Bible began to cut away at the lies that Perfect had fed me all those years. I began to understand.

You see, Perfect wanted me to identify with all the wrong things. Through the years I had found my identity inside a long list of expectations and priorities that I kept striving for. But the only place that took me was straight to the treadmill where I kept running a never-ending race I couldn’t win.

I was exhausted and worn out from trying to keep up an image that God never intend for me to have in the first place. I had my focus in all the wrong places and didn’t even realize it.

What I needed to do was to die to this life. I needed to give up on looking to the things of this world for my identity and instead I needed to find what was hidden in the heart of God.

For you died to this life and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:3 (NLT)

And when I finally did begin to look there, I found myself again. I found my true identity, my real life.

It was as if He took me in the palms of His hands and held me close to His heart. I was safe there and tucked in tight where I couldn’t hear the lies that Perfect was trying to tell me.

He held me close and let me stay there for a long long time.

And when I felt better, and the pressure to be perfect had gone away, He set me back down again, so I could keep walking on the journey he had laid out for me, unafraid and confident.

I found a deep love there that made me feel so completely and utterly accepted, just the way I was. I realized that with God, I didn’t have to measure up. I only had to accept His love. He had already found me completely worthwhile and lovable and I didn’t have to do a thing to earn that.

Since you were precious in My sight, you have been honored and I have loved you. Isaiah 43:4 (NKJV)

I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands. Isaiah 49:16  (NKJV)

I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands. Isaiah 49:16

Can you feel the love in those verses? Can you hear what He is saying to you here? These are the words that spoke to my heart during the difficult process of finding myself again. These verses are for you, too. We are all His precious daughters, completely loved, completely accepted.

We are all His precious daughters, completely loved, completely accepted. Click To Tweet

If we look up and let God’s love define us, that’s where we will find our true identity. It’s that love which is hidden with Christ in the heart of God.

In Christ we have a steady, solid, unchanging relationship with a Savior who sustains us, holds us, and takes us straight to the heart of God. He calls us to die to the things of this world. He wants us to let go of finding our worth in anything else but Him. It is only then that we will find our real life and our true identity.

In Christ we have a steady, solid, unchanging relationship with a Savior who sustains us, holds us, and takes us straight to the heart of God. Click To Tweet

And when we find that, we’ll not want to play the hiding game anymore because we will have come to a place where we can be free to be ourselves. We can stand up, be seen, and walk with confidence toward the callings He has given us.

Blessings!

Leslie

Focus Verses 

For you died to this life and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:3 (NLT)

You can study this verse in more depth at Bible Hub. Click HERE to go to the correct page.

I have inscribed you on the palms of my hand. Isaiah 49:16 – (NKJV)

You can study this verse in more depth at Bible Hub  Click HERE to go to the correct page.

Let’s Talk
Why do you think it is so hard for us as women to find peace with understanding where our true value comes from? What kinds of things help you remember that you belong to Him and that He loves you deeply? I would love to hear from you in the comment section below!

Next Week
Join me next week as we take a practical look at identity. We’ll discover how we can we recognize what an identity crisis might look like in our lives and we’ll uncover some wisdom from God’s Word that will help us if we find ourselves in that kind of place.

This post may be linked in these encouraging places. Click HERE to see where! 

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As women we often look to a lot of things in this life for our identity, but our true identity is hidden in a very special place. Do you know where to find it?

14 thoughts on “Do You Know Where to Find Your True Identity?

    1. Lori, Thank you so very much for that encouragement and for stopping by and reading! I have been so encouraged by your blog as well! I was actually there just last night and I keep going back to read more! I love walking a journey to imperfect with the sweet sisters in Christ that I have met along the way. It’s so good to know we don’t walk this journey alone! Blessings!!!

  1. Little miss perfect likes to show up on my doorstep too, at times. (And, that’s not polite, so she’s not perfect either. *smile*) — Leslie, this is such a comforting post. Thank you for writing it. I come from a family of dysfunction with parents who aren’t involved, which can lead to a lifetime of trying to measure up. But, as you’ve so beautifully stated, it’s God’s love that defines us. — Thanks for sharing with #ChasingCommunity today. ((hug))

    1. Thanks for your kind words, Brenda. You gave me a little chuckle with the little miss that shows up on your doorstep. 🙂 I’ve enjoyed meeting you and others at your blog. Thank you so much for sharing your space and for all the encouragement you give us! It’s been so good to have nice conversation and read such uplifting posts! Thanks, Brenda!

  2. Leslie- thank you for sharing this! I’ve been acquainted with Perfect too. It’s exhausting and wrecks havoc on your minds and bodies.
    Anchoring ourselves in God’s view of us helps us see we are amazing without any doings on our part. Isn’t great to know He loves us just as we are?
    #ChasingCommunity

  3. So comforting and encouraging! I especially love where you said God held you close for a long long time. I’m still very much in process of finding my true identity in God. I think for some of us its a lifelong struggle. Some days are easier than others. I think I need to make more time for Him. I’m too easily distracted. I’m so thankful for His unconditional love!

    1. Hi Gwen, I think you are right that it is a life long thing. We are always in a process of understanding who we are in Christ. It’s a journey for sure! Blessings!

  4. Beautiful testimony, Leslie! I love how God speaks to us so deeply through His Word, reminding us that we are His, loved, and that He brings us specific help with whatever we are dealing with. Thanks for sharing your story. 🙂

  5. Leslie- So great to meet you!
    I wrestle with perfectionism too- and can definitely idenitify with giving my identity over to hiding behind that! I love the verses and encouragement you share here. So much better to be seeking and be near the Lord who makes us who we are instead of hiding out trying to make ourselves perfect before anyone sees otherwise. I’d love to see you address the role of shame keeping us trapped in perfectionism, this blog has such an apt, relevant focus! I love it : )

    1. Bethany, Thank you so much for your kind words! And the role of shame is a fantastic topic to address. I would like to address that in the future and am actually working on figuring that out within my own personal life right now. It’s a journey, isn’t it? Thanks so much for stopping by and for your comments! Blessings!

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