Today is my 27th birthday. I have always loved birthdays and thought they were special. I have always celebrated my birthday by reflecting on the past year of my life. However this birthday feels different than all the others. This year I appreciate my birthday more than ever before. Maybe this is because I understand, in a more complex way, the beauty of life. I understand that birthdays are never a guarantee. I understand that every year, every month, every week and every day of life is truly a gift from God that we far too often take for granted. I am hit by the reality that I could not have made it to this birthday. My number could have been up at 26. The truth is though that reality has been true every year of my life, this is the first year I have truly contemplated it and not taken it for granted. During my 26th year, I lost the life of our precious baby and nearly lost my own life as well. How much more so do I realize that life is beautiful and to be treasured?
I know that God has a purpose for me to stay on this earth a little while longer. This past year I have struggled with the feeling of losing my identity. I had wrapped up my identity into my ministry and mission work with refugees in the apartment complex we lived in. When all that was stripped away, I felt devastated. Who was I? Who am I now? I lost all my labels. God is continuously trying to teach me that when we place our identity into the things we do, where we live, our job, our relationships or any other thing of this world we will be unsatisfied. All of these things are subject to change and could be taken away at any moment and if that happens the results are devastating. There is no identity of this world that is permanent and constant.
I am learning that there is only one identity that can never be taken away from me. There is only one identity that never changes and that is the identity I have found as part of the kingdom of God through Jesus Christ. I have been called a daughter of the King and in this I am secure. I have been given new life and freedom in Him. I am loved unconditionally. I have been forgiven of every mistake I've ever done. I am given a purpose and hope to live for. If I find my identity and security in Him, I am confident that will never change.
May my 27th year be a year for growing closer to the one who gives me life!
Happy Birthday to me :)
Where do you find your identity? Watch this short youtube video if you would like to hear more!