I’ve been thinking a lot about identity lately. Could be because I reviewed a book last week on identity (where to find it, where not to.) Could be because as I spend some time every day marketing my new book, I am riddled with doubts about whether or not I’m doing enough…and if I’m making the best decisions…because if I’m not…then the whole world will see my mistakes.
Which makes me think I’m focusing my identity (once again) on what I achieve rather than on who I am. Big mistake.
Given that I fail countless times every hour, I know better than to put value on accomplishments to determine if I am of value…but I still find myself falling into that trap more often than not.
So…you can imagine how much I appreciated author Paul Tripp’s words on placing people (or accomplishments, health, beauty, wealth, etc,) as our “identity” qualifiers when I read them…since he says it way better than I can…read on.
As you look to a person for identity, you’re not really loving them – you’re loving you. You’ve turned the second great commandment on its ear. Instead of serving people because you love them, you’re willing to serve them so that they’ll love you. This kind of parasitic relationships is never healthy.
Our children were never given to us to be trophies on the mantel of our identity. Our spouses were never given to us to be personal messiahs. No relationship should be the source of our identity, because we look to people to give us what only God could give. We ask our relationships to provide us life, contentment, happiness, and joy, but sooner or later, like anything other than the Creator, they’ll fail us.