On Tuesday Mikayala asked me to go and talk to her GLOW group about identity.

GLOW is our churches intermediate aged girls group (age 12-13)

It was a fun session esp as they had no idea i was their “mystery” guest.  the girls are super sweet and had neat notebooks they even took notes in!  we had fun talking about God stuff and sharing stories about cool things God does.  we begun after a short intro by writing on A4 sized HELLO MY NAME IS pages 3 words that describe who we are and used that as our springboard to talk about identity issues and knowing what God says about us.  following are my message notes.

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So what is identity?

Identity is how you see yourself and then that affects how you live out in the world.

Writing down some of attributes can be one of the ways be can begin to identify our identity.  Remember our identity is what we think about ourselves.   And it shapes how we then live in real life.  It shapes whether we are brave and take risks.  It shapes how we make friends.  It shapes what goals we set.  It shapes who we become.

Often we can have identity issues – more commonly known as insecurity – when we start comparing our lives to other peoples.  That is often because we are comparing our behind the scenes to someone’s highlight reel.  We’re comparing ourselves to the best of peoples lives.  This happens esp on social media and instagram etc.  people post pictures of their best cooking, their best clothes, their best holiday, their best whatever.  But sometimes our life doesn’t look like that.  We burn the cupcakes.  We wear track pants.  We have a staycation (which is a vacation when you stay at home).

It’s important to have a secure identity – something that isn’t based on what we do or how we look, but is based upon what God says about us.

We often look at the way someone looks or the way someone acts and think that because we don’t do that that we aren’t valuable or special.

When I was first starting to do preaching I did a preaching course.  Everyone else on the course sounded really spiritual and deep and there was me.  I love God heaps but I sometimes don’t sound spiritual and deep.  People even say I am funny!  I had to learn to be who I am, who God made me to be.

But God has uniquely made you – He says you are fearfully and wonderfully made.  Psalm 139:14

It’s really important at this stage of your life that you understand what God says about you.  There are going to be lots of people with an agenda to make you feel insecure.  To compare you to others and say you’re not valuable.  Or cool.  Or pretty.  Or smart.  But when you know who you are on the inside, when you have a secure identity, nothing can shake you.  It’s like their words just bounce off.

 

So who does GOD say I am?

God does not love us because of our performance; He loves us because of our position as His child.  Because He is our Dad, He loves us.  Simple as that.

What gives us our identity is not coolness status, or culture, what labels we wear,  or relationship status. But chosenness.

1 John 3:1 says you are a child of God, and the Father lavishes His love on you.  Earlier in the New Testament, Paul writes that we were bought at a price (1 Corinthians 7:23). Your value has never been in question. Your value was set by your creator when He gave the life of His son Jesus. Jesus paid for you on the cross. You are a child of the king. Simple as that.

Ephesians 1:5 says this: God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.

Insecurity grows up in our heart when we stop believing or we forget what God says our value is, and we believe what others, or even our own mind, says our value is.

The problem with that: Anything that does not come from God is probably a lie. The truth is that you are a child of God; you are valuable, and God wants show you His love.

Do you know what the word LAVISH means?

You have to believe what God says about you even more than you believe what you think about yourself.

 

So how do we have a right identity?

  1. Know what God says about you.
  2. Have good people who will encourage to be yourself
  3. When you think the insecure thoughts – replace them with God’s truth.

 

The Bible describes that as taking every thought captive 2 Corinthians 10:5.  It means you don’t let the negative thoughts make a home in your heart.  You can choose to flick them away.

So when I think I’m not very spiritual  I remind myself that God made me and that the Holy Spirit lives in me.

When I think that I’m not very pretty I remind myself that God made me and He doesn’t make junk.

When I think that I’m not very smart I remind myself that God has all the wisdom and I can pray and He will show me the truth

 

A good thing to do is when you’re at church or GLOW is to write down the cool bible verses that you hear.  Sometimes there are bible verses that just jump out at you.

One for me is 2 Corinthians 4:7 that says I am just a jar of clay so that the all surpassing power is of God.  When I first heard that it jumped out at me and so I wrote it down in my journal and I refer to it heaps.  It reminds me who God has made me to be and what I am living for and that He is amazing.

Keep a journal of the cool things that God says about you and write down the truth from God.  When you’re then thinking the negative thoughts you can replace it with God’s truth.

Some other ideas are to write a poem, write a song, paint a poster, act a drama… be creative.  Find a way that helps you connect God’s truth to identity issues so that when the lie comes you can shoo it away with the truth.

 

Identity is how you see yourself and then how you live that out in your world.  Know you are loved.  Know you are created.  Know ou are purposed.  Know you are empowered.

 

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