Sunday, December 17, 2006

Who I Am

I’ve been thinking a lot about identity and images and what certains icons or symbols say about people. In particular, I’ve been thinking about my blog and what someone might learn or assume about me in a passing glance. What impressions I’m leaving. How I come across. Is it accurate? Is it who I really am? I try to be honest, but I still realize that unless we know someone well, we really only make judgments and assumptions about them based on our own perceptions.

It got me to thinking about who I am. Here are a few things about me that may or may not come across here on Charity Grace. I’m a young wife, a pastor’s wife. I’m the mother of 3 small children. I was homeschooled and I homeschool my own kids. I grew up in a large family (5 children) and I hope to have a large family of my own one day. I’m not a Baptist, I’m a Christian whom God has placed in a Baptist church. I grew up in the country and some day I’d love to live in the country again. I like to cook whole, natural foods for my family. I’m a full-time homemaker, something I’m so grateful for. I love to stretch a dollar. I’m passionate about the benefits of breastfeeding for my babies. I’m into old stuff, especially anything retro. The only retro thing I can think of that I don’t like is furniture. In that regard I’m more into some blend of shaker and craftsman styles. I live in the deep South. I grew up near the Mexican border. I love to craft. I’m an incurable girly-girl, and I love pink (surprised?), nail polish, lipstick, skirts, and dangly earrings.

If you’ve made it through this self-absorbed laundry list, congratulations, because I’m about to let you in on a little secret. That’s not who I am. Those things are not where I find my identity. Those things are not what I’m about. They are just frou-frou.

Here’s who I am: a Christ-follower. A child of God. Period.

If all those other things were stripped away, who I am would still remain. Because who I am is about the heart. And who I am is—or should be—reflected in my character. (Yes, I know, scary.)

If I find my identity in my lifestyle, the center of my being is on shaky ground. A lifestyle can be gone in a moment. If I find my identity in my family, I’ll be lost when my nest is empty. If I find my identity in my home décor, then I will feel uneasy when I’m not able to decorate my house just the way I want it. If I find my identity in crafting, arthritis or failing eyesight that could come with age would throw me into depression.

If I find my identity in Christ, I’m free. Free to embrace whatever He gives me and however He leads me. Free to just be his girl, trusting in His love, at peace with His plan. I don’t have to lean on the crutch of external categories. It’s not that I don’t love and enjoy God’s gifts in those areas of my life, or that they aren’t important, because they are—some more than others. But they don’t define me. If He leads me to spend my life in a high rise apartment where I develop a penchant for modern art (perish the thought!), who I am does not change. If I discover that by some surprise, He has only chosen to give me 3 children, I’m the same. If I never get to buy anything old and quaint again, it’s OK. At my center I’m secure. Because it’s not about me. It’s about Him. And He never changes.


Windy said...

Don't you just love God... He has made all of us unique in his own way, and that is what makes this world go round. :)

dh said...

I've never seen you jump like that. :}

Charity Grace said...

It is cool, Windy. When I really grasped God's truth about my identity and realized that all the other stuff was great, but not the most important "who I am", it freed me so much to let others be who God created them to be. Because we can all have different backgrounds and different likes and dislikes, yet still be one at heart, where it matters. I don't know if I'm even making sense...I just know that I can now be friends with all different kinds of people, even when they aren't just like me, because the inner life is what counts, not all the peripheral stuff. And it's such fun to see the uniqueness in each person. (In my case it's probably more eccentricity.)

Dh, I don't jump like that on the outside, just on the inside. What assumptions are you making about me based on that image? LOL, just kidding (except for the part about jumping on the inside).

Urka said...

An awesome post!