ODJ: true identity

September 5, 2013 

READ: Colossians 3:1-4 

Your real life is hidden with Christ in God (v.3).

Peter Chiarelli, the second highest ranking American army officer, attended a formal dinner last year. Valerie Jarrett, a presidential adviser, was seated at a table when Chiarelli passed behind her. Chiarelli’s uniform had a stripe down the side of the trousers, almost identical to the waiting staff’s uniform. Seeing only his striped pants, Valerie asked General Chiarelli for a beverage. Without skipping a beat, the general picked up Jarrett’s order and brought it to her. She was mortified at her mistake, but Chiarelli brushed the mishap off. He even invited her to join his family for dinner at his home.

Paul makes an astounding declaration about our true identity, announcing that we “have been raised to new life with Christ” (Colossians 3:1). All who have “died with Christ” have been made new by God (2:20). Paul doesn’t say we might be raised to new life. Rather, He declares our union with Christ as an accomplished fact. We who were drowning in death are now filled to the brim with life.

This splendid existence describes who we truly are. This is the core truth about us. We might not fully recognise this reality. Others might miss the extent of all the newness and goodness God has placed within us. No matter, God sees what is true, and He calls us to live out this truth: “Set your sights on the realities of heaven” (3:1).

The old life that clings to us will surely fall away. It’s a doomed relic of the era of death from which we’ve been rescued. Now “Christ . . . is [our] life” and God promises that one day we “will share in all His glory” (v.4). Make no mistake; our true identity is found in Jesus. —Winn Collier

Mark 12:28-37 ‹

Read Galatians 2:20-21. What has died and what is new? What does this say about your true identity?
Why do you sometimes find it difficult to believe that God has put something new and beautiful in you? What might hinder this newness from emerging more fully in your life?