“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” Psalm 139:14
Who are you? Whenever I ask myself that question, the things that immediately come to mind are words like student, Young Life leader, camp counselor. All of these are things that I do. In fact, I think that most people probably think of themselves in terms of what they do.
Maybe you make good grades. Maybe you play sports. Maybe you’re the person that your friends call when they need help. Maybe - and I hope this isn’t the case - you think of yourself in terms of the mistakes you’ve made. The thing is though, when we’re defining ourselves in terms of what we do, we’re missing the life we were meant to live.
When Jesus came to earth, he flipped the world upside down. He talked about His kingdom, the kingdom of heaven, belonging not to actual kings and rich people, but belonging to the poor in spirit. He is the King of a kingdom that treasures people not for what they can do, but for who they are. So what does that even mean anyway? The kingdom of heaven cherishes people because they are children of God.
Jesus says that the greatest among us is the least. This is totally against how the world around us operates. The world values people for what they do right. When we look at Jesus, though, He’s always spending time around all kinds of people- some of whom don’t do much of anything right. It’s pretty obvious that Jesus doesn’t choose the people He’s around based on what they can do for Him. He spends time with them because they’re His children. He loves us because we’re His children, not because of the things that we do for Him.
If we revisit this question of, “Who are you?” we find out that, just as Jesus turned the world upside down, He turns this question upside down. Jesus tells us that we’re more than what we do. We’re more than a sports team or a GPA or a group of friends. We’re more than what people say about us. We’re more than our best moment or our worst moment. Psalm 139 gives us the key to who we are. It says we are fearfully and wonderfully made. We are a wonderful work of God! If we believe that, if we let Jesus turn our identity upside down, we are in for an amazing adventure.
If we believe what God says in Psalm 139, then we are defined beyond our success and failure, beyond what we can do and can’t do. If we’re defined by being children of God, everything changes! We can be fearless and confident in how God sees us, and we can see the people around us as God’s children as well.
Today, pray that you can see yourself the way God sees you.