Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Living in Your Identity as a Child of God ~ Elizabeth's testimony

I believe it was around six years ago that I knew in my heart I was not satisfied in Jesus, but I really wanted to be. Through a book I was reading about who I was in Jesus there was a list of scripture verses paraphrased that spoke of my identity in the Lord as His child. After reading the book I still did not feel satisfied in Jesus but I remember thinking to myself that the Bible is truth and that what it is communicating to me about my identity is true even though I did not feel it. I knew I needed God to do a work in my heart.


 I decided to use my exercising time on the treadmill to declare these truths from scripture of who I was in Jesus. Most often I would start my time with a simple prayer “Lord, would You place these truths in my heart.” As I spoke these paraphrased verses I would begin by saying “Thank you Lord and then continue on with the verse, “Since I am in Christ, by the grace of God… I have been justified completely forgiven and made righteous” (Rom 6:1-6) 


Thank you Lord that I am free forever from condemnation (Rom.8:1)
Thank you that I have been given the mind of Christ (I Cor. 2:16)
Thank you Lord that I have been bought with a price: I am not my own; I belong to God (I Cor. 6:19, 20)
Thank you that I have been crucified with Christ and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. The life I am now living is Christ’s life (Gal. 2:20)
Thank you that I have been raised up and seated with Christ in heaven (Eph.2:6)
Thank that I can come boldly before the throne of God to find mercy and grace in time of need (Heb.4:16)
Thank you that I have been redeemed and forgiven, and I am a recipient of His lavish grace (I John 1:9)
Thank you Lord that I have been made complete in Christ (Col. 2:10)

As I continued to speak God’s truth into my heart, He began to do a work in me. As God’s truth went deep within my soul I began to know my identity as a child of Jesus and was satisfied in Him. So many things that I had been struggling with before were diminishing in my life as the Lord was setting me free with His truth. One of the victories in my life as a result of God’s work was no longer caring what people thought of me. There was now a new freedom in living for Jesus alone. John 8:31-32 says, “So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed Him, ‘If you abide in my Word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.’”

Since that time I have had seasons where I have struggled to live in these truths, but God has kept helping me come back to what is true. Today in my heart by God placing His truth in me, I have a settledness in my heart that I am His, I belong, and I am His child.

You are a chosen race...

 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.

 ~1 Peter 2:9

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Your True Identity in Christ ~ by Amy Vest


Who are you?  


If someone asked you that question, how would you answer?  Even more importantly, what would be the answer if you asked yourself, “Where do I find my sense of worth, security, and value?”

This is an issue of identity.  Identity essentially means: “who someone is” - where we find our value, or our sense of worth.  Where we find our identity is so important because we behave in line with what we believe about who we are.

We live in a culture that tells us that our worth is found in how we look, what we do, how much we have, how popular we are.  This only leads into insecurity, fear, unfulfillment, and never measuring up.

If you have trusted Jesus as your Savior and Lord, you have an identity and worth in Christ that will transform you the more you understand and live in its reality!


When you have come to Jesus Christ for salvation – He saves you and you become a new creation in Christ, and a child of God.  
Salvation takes place when you: 
~ Come to God realizing that you are a sinner, that your sin separates you from God, and that you deserve to spend eternity in hell apart from God.  
~ See that Jesus Christ, the perfect Son of God, came to earth, lived a perfect life, died on the Cross to pay the penalty for your sins, rose from the dead and stands ready to save you if you will confess your sins to God.
~ Ask Jesus to be your Lord and Savior and cleanse you from your sins, and put your total trust in His work for you on the Cross. 
Then when God looks at you, He sees Jesus, His redeeming work in your life, and His righteousness.

So, when you become a Christian – you are a new creation and you have a new identity.  2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 

Your worth no longer lies in what you do, how you look, or what other people say you are.
Your worth lies in Jesus Christ, what He has done, and who you are in HIM!

Galatians 2:20 tells us, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now livein the  flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” 

Your identity is no longer YOU, but HIM!  A you-centered (or people, possession, position) identity will lead you to an identity crisis – those things will fail, disappoint you, and never fully fulfill!  A Christ-centered identity will bring you all of the security, meaning, and purpose you long for – Jesus never fails you and can totally fulfill you.

Don’t turn to someone or something else to define you or tell you who you are!  JESUS has already told you who you are – you just need to listen to Him (and not to yourself or voices of others).  Understand that whoever you allow to define you and tell you who you are and clamor for their approval, you make your god.  The only one who has the right to define you is the One who created you!  Listen to JESUS - not the world, the devil, or yourself.  Ask, “Jesus, who do You say that I am?  What do you say about me?”  He has told you amazing, life-changing things about who you are in Him!  It is so important that you know and understand your true identity of who you are in Him – and then live in the reality of it!    

Let’s look in His Word ~ Scripture ~ and see who He says you are in Him:


~ Redeemed - He has delivered us from the 
power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of 
the Son of His lovein whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.”  Colossians 1:13-14

~ Accepted - “…to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved. Ephesians 1:6 
~ Beloved – “…you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.” 2 Thessalonians 2:13
~ Child of God – “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.” John 1:12
~ Complete in Christ – For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power.”  Colossians 2:9-10
~ Nothing can separate you from His love –  For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,  nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37-39
~ Chosen/“Royal Priesthood” – “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” 1 Peter 2:9 
~ God’s Workmanship –  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10
~ and so many more!  I encourage you to look into the Bible more and see what the Lord says about who you are in Jesus!

Isn’t this breathtaking?
  This is who you are in Jesus!

As you see this, allow the Lord’s grace to bring these amazing truths from your head to your heart in a way that transforms the way you live your life!  Because, if you really believe and walk in the reality of who you are in Christ, it will change your life! If you believe you are:
~ Accepted – you will not look to others for affirmation and acceptance (which can lead to so much trouble).
~ Beloved – you will not desperately look for love in other places.
~ Redeemed – you will not try to gain God’s approval through works.
~ Royal Priesthood and a Daughter of the King of Kings – you will want to be set apart and live for HIS kingdom vs. this world.
…. and so much more!

See how it changes you?

It is a life-long journey of growing in walking more fully in our identity in Christ. 
 It is becoming in practice like we are already in position.  It is knowing we are unchangeably accepted, and receiving God’s grace in growing to live like it.

We need to keep these truths of our identity in front of our eyes.
  I encourage you to write some of these verses and realities of who you are in Christ on cards and put them up on your mirror, above your bed, and other places where you will see them!

As you grow in living in your true identity in Christ you will find you are able to increasingly: 

~ Live confidently in who you are in Him.
~ Not be emotionally up and down based on what people think of you – but able to rest in what HE has said about who you are.
~ Be able to focus on HIM alone and what He thinks of you – vs. always worrying what others think of you.
These things will lead you into a deeper relationship with Him and will allow Him to more freely work through you!

I have found the power of this in my own life – as you receive the Lord’s grace to walk in the reality of who you are in Jesus, you are increasingly able to live day-to-day and walk into any setting and rest in who you are in Jesus.  Whether people love you or hate you, or think you are wonderful or weird, you can be at peace knowing your position in Christ and what He thinks of you You can walk into church, a social gathering, etc. and do not need to look around at everyone and hope they accept you – you can be confident of, and secure in, who you are in Christ and be able to shine His love!  

Every day of my life, I need to walk in the reality of who I am in Jesus!  Understanding who I am because of Jesus and what He has done continues to grow my gratitude for Jesus and be life-altering for me.  When I am not living in the reality of my identity in Jesus, I find I become insecure, etc. and then the Lord faithfully directs my eyes back to my position and value because of Him and the security returns!  I want to live more fully in my identity in Christ with each breath I take. 

These beautiful truths are yours when you are in Christ:
~ You are not defined by your worst day, what you have done, or what you do – but, by what Jesus has done for you.
~ You are not defined by how you look, but by what God sees when He looks at you – JESUS!
~ You are not defined by what you have accomplished, but by what Jesus has accomplished for 
you on the Cross!
~ You are not defined by what you know, or even the fact that you know God, but the fact that God knows you because of Jesus!
~ You are not defined by what people say about you, but by what God says about you!
~ You are not defined by who you are, but by Who He is in you!


Understanding and living in your identity in Jesus is life transforming.  Jesus meant for you to know, believe, and live in this reality!  

Keep looking to Jesus and His Word for a definition of your true identity, daily remind yourself of and live in the reality of these truths, and watch Him transform your life!

Go and live in your true identity in Christ!




Christ lives in me...

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

            ~Galatians 2:20

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Join us for the Summer Devotions Pursuit 2017!



Summer Devotions Pursuit from Loving the Lord Ministries on Vimeo.

We would like to invite you to join us for the 2017 Summer Devotions Pursuit - a special time of seeking Jesus from June 1st - August 31st!

Here are the basic details:
WHO: You and Jesus
WHERE: Wherever you are
WHEN: June 1st - August 31st, 2017

WHAT IS INVOLVED:
- 15 minutes of devotions a day
- Memorizing 1 verse a week
- Choosing and contacting an accountability partner once every 2 weeks
... and an amazing summer with Jesus! 
You can print off a chart to keep track on the LTLM website - http://lovingthelordministries.org/event-items/summer-pursuit!

REWARD: When you complete the Summer Pursuit: You send in your chart by September 7th and you receive a reward in the mail - in addition to the best reward of knowing Jesus!  This year's reward will be a special surprise package!

RSVP:
It is not necessary to let us know that you are taking part in the Summer Devotions Pursuit - You can just send your chart in at the end of the summer when you complete the Pursuit!  (That said, you can leave a comment on this post just for fun if you want to let us know you are taking part!)
You can watch the "Summer Devotions Pursuit" video (above, or at http://vimeo.com/41883667) and visit the website (www.lovingthelordministries.org) for more details.  You can contact us at info@lovingthelordministries.org with questions. 


Invite your friends to join us!!!

This is going to be an amazing summer of pursuing and growing in knowing Jesus!
  Pursue Jesus with all that you are this summer, friends. He is so amazing! He will meet with you - and you will never be the same!

Our prayer is that for each of us this summer will be a powerful time to begin, or deepen, a life pattern of seeking Jesus and growing in experiencing His goodness every day!

"He satisfies the longing soul…” Psalm 107:9

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Join us for Session 4 - "Your Identity in Christ" - of the Beautiful to God Online Conference!

Session 4 ~ "Your Identity in Christ" from Loving the Lord Ministries on Vimeo.

Who are you? Your identity essentially means: "who someone is" - where we find our value, or our sense of worth. Where we find our identity is so important because we behave in line with what we believe about who we are. If you have trusted Jesus as your Savior and Lord, you have an identity and worth in Christ that will transform you the more you understand and live in its reality! 

2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come."

Please join us for this video as we look at the transforming reality of your identity in Jesus!

Please visit our website http://lovingthelordministries.org/ for handouts and study questions for this session.

A New Creation...


Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

~2 Corinthians 5:17