Being Defines Doing

A common problem that many of us share is defining our identity and value based on our work and performance. We let the roles we fill (wife, mom, student, athlete, employee) become the central, orienting piece of our life and identity. We also evaluate ourselves based on how well we perform. In a nutshell, we tend to operate out of the belief that our doing defines our being.

But Scripture points us to the fact that, for those who are disciples of Jesus, reality is quite the opposite. Our core identity consists of two parts: being created by God in His image in order to display His glory; and being redeemed by Christ and adopted as a child of God, so that we may know God and make Him known.

This identity is where our value and worth are derived from. We did nothing to merit our creation or salvation, so the quality of our performance cannot touch our value. And with our core identity being rooted in Christ, the job we do and roles we occupy do not define us. Instead, the identity given by God shapes and drives what we do and how we live. Our roles become unique avenues for us to know God more intimately and live as His image-bearers.

So let us hold our work loosely, remembering that we are defined by something more eternal. And let us humbly and boldly live in a way that exalts our Savior, in whose perfect righteousness we stand secure.

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