What do you identify with? Whom do you imitate? What is it that you are really living for? If the truth were told, many people live for something other than God.
“Therefore, be imitators of God, as dear children.” (Ephesians 5:1)
Our youth pastor brought this idea up last Sunday evening, and it is very true–we worship whatever it is that we find our truest identity in. And while most of us would scoff at the idea that we serve idols, the reality is that we struggle with more than a few false gods in our lives on an ongoing basis. I came up with quite a list of my own.
So, do you find your identity in Christ–in who He is and who you are in Him–or do you find it:
…in your spouse or your children?
…in who your family is/which family you come from?
…in your education/your degree/your educational credentials?
…in your position in society?
…in your money/wealth/ownership?
…in your physical strength/your competence?
…in your appearance/beauty?
…in your social skills/charm?
…in where you live?
…in what you drive?
…in how much you’ve travelled/where you’ve been?
…in who you know/who your friends are?
…maybe even, in what you’ve done–for God or others?
God tells us that human nature is to worship and serve the things God has created rather than the Creator Himself. (Romans 1:28) Why is this? Why do we do this? Why do we lose/why have we lost our understanding of the Creator–of who He is and of the fact that it is Him alone we ought to find our identity in and worship?
We were created to worship God. It is inherent in us; we want to worship, to find our identity in something. But sin obscures our understanding and deceives us into running after the wrong things. Unless we come to a point where we find ourselves in Christ, it will never be enough.
People will disappoint us, things will decay and get old, you will never have enough degrees or credentials or be smart or accomplished enough. In the end, the only thing that will matter is the One who matters–the only One who can fill every need we ever had.
“Be astonished, O heavens, at this, and be horribly afraid; be very desolate,” says the Lord. For My people have committed two evils: they have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, and hewn themselves cisterns—broken cisterns that can hold no water.” (Jeremiah 2:12-13 NKJV)
God knows our tendency to abandon Him, the fountain of living waters, and turned aside to broken down wells that can hold nothing. This is why Jesus Himself said, “’If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive…” (John 7:37-39a NKJV)
When we come to Christ, He forgives us and gives us His Spirit and a new birth. Everything is suddenly clear. We can recognize the things we previously could not; we can understand what was formerly obscured. All of the answers are found in Him, all of the mysteries are solved at His feet.
Today’s verse instructs us to imitate God, but it is the one we love and admire, the one we ourselves want to become like–the one we find our truest identity in–that we imitate. May we recognize Him as the only One who can satisfy and drink freely from His Word and be satisfied!
Help us abandon our broken cisterns that cannot give us what we need and recognize that it is from You alone that we get the living water that will satisfy. Help us come and be filled with all that You are. We thank You! Amen.