I’m so grateful that God showed me the truth about him and my identity. Since then, I’ve experienced more peace in my life, and I don’t have to let my behavior and mistakes define my identity. Yet in those early days of understanding this, I still had this nagging voice in my head that occasionally whispered “I needed to become a godly man.” It was like a buzzing mosquito that wouldn’t leave me alone.
One day I was alone in my car, driving to work and thinking about what it meant to be a godly man—just as I had for many years. In that moment, though, God whispered something in my spirit. He said, “Mark, you are already a godly man. Do you believe me?”
As I accepted that truth for the first time, it seemed as if everything around me suddenly got brighter and a heavy weight fell away from my shoulders. I realized God was saying, “You have been a godly man since the day you were saved at age nine.” Now I could stop doing spiritual activities to prove I was a godly man, because I already was godly based on my identity in Christ. To be quite honest, that moment provided one of the greatest feelings of relief I’ve ever experienced. For the first time I felt as though I could relax before God. My striving to be a godly man was over.
As I’ve counseled, taught, and preached in churches, I’ve discovered many Christians are stuck in the same place. They don’t realize they are already godly, holy, righteous, loving, and patient in Christ. So they strive to become that person when they already are that person. Talk about living with a false identity.
Friend, more than anything, I want you to experience the same freedom God offers all of us. Are you ready to let go of a false identity based on your behavior, feelings, and the opinions of others? Are you ready to embrace your true identity in Christ?
(From God’s Best-Kept Secret: Christianity Is Easier Than You Think by Mark Maulding, pages 72-23)
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