Children develop their sense of self from the environment in which they live. The family plays a large role in shaping the identity of children.
I am by no means an expert in identity formation but I can speak from personal experiences when I say that a parents’ opinion of their children and the ways they choose to communicate those opinions will either cultivate a positive, confident view of oneself or have a devastating effect upon a child’s sense of self.
In my case, the latter was true.
James 3:6 “And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell.
James 3:9 “With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God.”
As a child I believed I was who they said I was. I was told that I would never amount to anything; that I was stupid and dumb. I was told to stay out of their sight. I was often locked in closets or confined to the basement and was severely punished for infractions. Their words and actions cut to the core of my being. I was depressed, anxious and withdrawn.
Here is where I have to stop and say: but God! He had plans for me that were yet to be unveiled.
As Joseph stated in Genesis 50:20 “As for you, you meant it as evil against me, but God meant it for good…”
When I was saved in 1989, along with the gift of faith came hope. Hope that, with God’s help, I would overcome the past and begin anew.
Second Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
I clung to that verse as a new believer and began to see that truth manifest in my life. God began to give me a new identity. An identity that He was familiar with from before the foundation of the world. An identity that He created; unique and wrought by His love. He began to tell me who I am.
Recanting this now has the power to bring me to my knees, overwhelmed by His grace.
He spoke the words I longed to hear as a child. That I was loved and valuable. That I was the daughter of the King. I had been lied to for all those years. His words entered that place of my heart that had been cut by evil words and experiences and gradually healing came and then joy, abundant joy! As my Heavenly Father began to reveal truth, His truth, I was transformed into a new creature in Christ. The former pain and rejection were loosening it’s grip on my soul and I soared on eagles wings. Delivered and set free!
This is my story. It can become your story too! The following Old Testament prophesy is being fulfilled by Jesus Himself. He is near to those who mourn; who cry out to Him with a sincere heart. Now is the year of the Lord’s favor.
Isaiah 61:1 “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to bring good news to the poor, He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound.”
I was bound up with self condemnation. But…
Romans 8:1 says “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
We get to wear Jesus Christ’s robe of righteousness. Continually until we draw our last breath, leave this body, and enter into the eternity He has planned for us.
There is a miracle that can change your life. That miracle is Jesus!