Whether young or old(er), married or single, male or female, everyone's looking for an identity. Everyone is looking to, somehow, identify with a person or organization that provides security. Someone or something to make sense of this life. Beginning at about age 11, I played organized baseball until I was in my late teens. With home life deteriorating my identification with baseball grew into becoming my reason for being. Although fast afoot, fear kept me from trying out for our high school football team my senior year. Basketball tryouts resulted in being cut, as was the case for our baseball team. Failure at basketball was tolerable, but not making the baseball team my senior year: devastating.
To make matters worse Coach Miles took me aside and told me that, if he took me, he'd have me (a senior) for one year. But, taking a junior meant having him for two years. With summer league eligibility expired, my high school playing days were over.
Still worshipping baseball, I attended a major-league tryout camp. Still fast, but, again, not enough of the skills necessary to go further. Another failed attempt at identifying with something capable-or so I thought-of providing meaning, purpose, and security.
Due to the unconditional love shown me by one family, I gave me life to Jesus Christ within days of the tryout. What happened that night of August 17, 1969, put me on the path of a life that I had needed my whole life, but had never been told about.
After a few years of stumbling around, I was introduced to teaching on our identification with Christ. I began to (slowly) find out who I really was-who I am in God's sight. I began to learn about who I am, in Christ, what I have in Him, and what I can do, through Christ. In short, I found my true identity, my purpose for being. Thank God for giving me true identity in Christ, not in temporal things which will eventually pass away.
God and gangs both offer an identity; both are available by choice. One is free and forever; the other costs you more than you're told and results in death-sometimes sooner than later. The second choice is one of force; the first is one of open invitation to all.
My true identity is found in Christ, in how God sees me. Although married with three grown children my identity is in Christ, my reason for being, security, strength, and rock. I still love the game of baseball, but its no longer my identification, for I can live without baseball. Not so with Christ, my Life, Peace: the one in Whom I have my true identity.
Confessing Jesus as Lord, out of a believing heart, and believing in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, will give you an identity that the world can't match.
Where's your true identity? In a gang? Sports? Music? Money? Ministry? Or in Christ?