Who Are You? Please take a minute to actually answer that question in your own mind before continuing to read. The chances are pretty good that you didn’t answer “I am a child of God…I am the King’s daughter (or son).” Yet, that’s exactly who you are and that’s the only identity we have as Christians with any true and lasting significance. Most of us will think of our name, and then something like, “I’m so-and-so’s mother (or father).” Or “I am so-and-so’s wife (or husband).” Or maybe “I’m so-and-so’s daughter (or son).” And those are all important identities and important roles we play as Christians and God’s children, but our single most important identity is the one we have in Christ; as His bride, as His church, as joint heirs with Him in the Kingdom of God, as illustrated in the following passages of scripture:
5 which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets:
6 that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel,
7 of which I became a minister according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power.
11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully
12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.
13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves,
14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
14 because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
15 For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”
16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.
17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.
19 The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed.
20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope
21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
These verses have a lot of heavy meat in them to digest, so please take the time to read and study all three chapters to get a better understanding of them in their full context and how they apply to your life today. Our identities as mothers, fathers, wives, husbands, sisters, brothers, daughters and sons are all temporary roles we play while here on earth, and each of them will present their own unique challenges and difficulties in our lives at some point, especially for those who are separated or divorced. So if our identity is based on any of those relationships, what happens to us when we lose that identity either through death or conflict? Our parents grow old, may get sick, and will eventually die. Our children grow up and leave home to start their own families. And as we all know only too well, our spouses can just get up and leave one day without warning; orr death can sever any of these relationships unexpectedly at any time.
Most of the women I have ministered to have had their entire identities wrapped up in being their husbands’ wives, and when they reject them, say they no longer love them, that they love someone else and don’t want anything to do with them anymore, they are crushed and devastated. And the same thing is true of most men as well. So, one of the first and most difficult things to get them to do is to stop focusing on their spouses; their wrong doing; what they are doing or not doing from day to day, etc.), and get their focus on who they are in Christ and what His plan is for their lives. As the above verses show us, everything that happens to us is God’s plan, and it is all for His glory and for the expansion of His kingdom. And when we take our eyes off of our personal pain and disappointment long enough to look at the whole picture, we can start to see everything SO much more clearly. I like to use the analogy of a tapestry. When we look at it from the back, it is just a jumbled up bunch of thread that makes no sense at all and there’s nothing appealing about it, but when we turn it around and see it as the designer meant it to be seen, we can see the beauty of it and appreciate it. But, even then, if we are too close and can only focus on one part of the tapestry, we still miss the total picture, so we have to stand back and look at it from a distance to really appreciate it fully.
That’s why it is SO important for us to understand and realize our identity as Christians and who we are in Christ. When we fully understand His purpose for our lives we can look at our marital situations from a totally different perspective and realize that it’s not about us; but it is quite often about the salvation of our spouses, and just as often, the salvation of our children, and even the salvation of those who may be watching how we walk through this trial. As Christian men and women standing for the restoration of our marriages, we are involved in heavy duty spiritual warfare and if we’re unable to understand that and access the powerful weapons of our warfare, we will not win the battle and we will not fulfill our identity or inheritance as Christians.
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.
11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,
15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
Now I pray in the name of Jesus, that we will always remember that we are the children of God and that we can walk in the victory Jesus died to give us, by receiving the inheritance we share with Him, which includes all that we need to save our marriages and families; namely His love, power and grace. Amen.