Like so many women, I can let “my victories” make me think that I am awesome, and I can let “my failures” make me think that I am unworthy. It is a constant yo-yo from day to day. Will today bring more “victories” than “failures,” or vice versa? But it is God’s joyful intention that we, more and more through his grace, remain in the center of the gospel – the good news that Jesus has granted us salvation and freedom through his perfect life, dying in our place on the cross, conquering Satan, sin and death, and restoring us in right relationship with the Father, our Father.
And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.” (1 Cor. 1:30-31)
We are all prone to connect our victories as well as our failures to our identity, but it is by the grace and mercy of God that for those who believe in Jesus Christ, their identity is found in Him and nothing else.
Christian sister, if you find this week that you are feeling down from actions or words you said, take the time to repent and believe that Jesus is your identity, your “failures” are not your identity. God can use those “failures” to show His greater grace and mercy in transforming our minds through them. (Rom. 12:1-2) If you are having a week where you are boasting in “your victories,” realize that there is nothing that you have that you did not first receive. (1 Cor. 4:7) If you are having a week where you are being raised on a pedestal of praise, or you are under the weight of criticism, these as well are not where your identity abides. Through the gospel we settle into what Timothy Keller calls “The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness” (a book I would highly recommend if this is an area you struggle in as well). This “self-forgetfulness” connects neither sin nor accomplishments to identity. Sin should be addressed and accomplishments celebrated, but neither defines who you are. Should you believe in the truth below, you are a daughter of God, and that is your identity. Meditate on the gospel daily so that you remember who you are and with Whom your identity abides. The gospel will be your anchor when victories and failures try to muddy the water of who you are.
Truth: “...if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Rom. 10:9)