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On Identity..

I walk through these New York City streets I’ve loved for so long and sometimes, like this afternoon, I catch a glimpse of a view of the architecture from a certain corner.. And it reminds me of a former self. Walking past the Met today I was vividly reminded of some old dreams.. A set of dreams from a certain phase of life. And I was tempted to fall into disappointment.  For a second I felt sad, remembering where I wanted to be. But then I remembered where I am. 

And all those old dreams were based on various manifestations of ego, or imagined scenarios that would build up this ideal of myself I wanted to create. And it’s all so hollow and it’s all so filled with this spirit-crushing anxiety. 

And God has never prospered the dreams when they were for my own glory. For this I am so grateful. 

And I look back on what I wanted to be when I was 25.. And I look at the woman I’m just now at 34 beginning to become and.. I’m so lucky. What an escape. How much greater and more expansive is this treasure of existence than what I even knew to ask for then...

I am wild and free. I lack for nothing. Even if I’m hungry. I know absolutely no lack. There is only abundance. 

And even this recognition can be dangerous because my identity and my ever-present pride can be caught up in the beautiful being God is making me into.. The glorious version of myself. And of course the moment I’m caught up in myself there’s no more glory. 

When the moon stops radiating the sun we can’t see it any more. 

All of this brought me today to the question of identity. Identity in Jesus, for those of us who believe in this: what does that mean? To be completely identified with Him. Must we be? Aren’t I also dancer, artist, woman, poet, wild and free, running with the wind.... All the things I love about myself as well as the things I’m still not sure of..?

But I believe that Jesus is God incarnate, the only One, and the Savior of the whole world. And I devote my life and all I am to Him. This belief requires nothing less. And... I don’t ever want to say “I serve Jesus and...” Or “I identify with Jesus and...”

But. He made me all these things. Non?

And then I realized that.... It’s all of the unique and even glorious parts of myself that I identify in Him. I was made to uniquely bear the image of my Creator. I show His beauty in a way no one else before or after me ever will. The same is true of each of us. And this beauty is.. From Him and through Him and to Him. 

So it’s not a question of differentiating between the faith self and the artist self and the feminine self etc etc. It’s all the same. It’s all from Him and through Him and to Him. 

So in abiding with my God and in fixing my eyes on my God... I become who I was made to be. And identity is not a question, because it’s all of Him, and it’s all radiant and unique to me. It fits perfectly and it’s glorious and it’s never about me. So I don’t have to push and strive to know myself better or be known in the world. That work is irrelevant. The only work is to abide in Jesus. 

And the more I can let go the more I find this wildly abundant life right where I’m standing.