Do you know who you are? Simple enough question, isn’t it? I’m not asking if you know your name, that would be silly. Unless you suffer from amnesia, you probably know your name, but I didn’t ask what your name is. I asked if you know who you are.
How do you define yourself? How do you see yourself when you look in the mirror of your soul? Do you define yourself as a husband, father, mother, daughter, brother, sister? Do you define yourself as affable, empathetic, giving, serving, faithful, obedient?
What about who you are in Christ? Have you given that much thought lately? Although philosophically speaking it is good to know ourselves as being fathers, mothers, brothers or sister, as is likewise useful to know ourselves as giving serving, and empathetic, who we are in Christ has eternal ramifications, yet is likely the thing we think about least.
In the opening lines of what is arguably his greatest epistle, Paul affirms who he is in Christ. He is not shy about who he is, nor is he uncertain regarding himself.
In fact, in the first verse, of the first chapter of Romans Paul lays out three distinct traits which he now possesses, something he is painfully aware he didn’t always possess.
You see, it's as essential to know who you were without Christ, as it is to know who you are in Christ because if you remember from whence you came, you know that it was only God and His grace that brought you where you are.
Paul knew the transformation he had gone through better than any other man. He knew he once was Saul, the man who consented to the murder of Stephen and even held the tunics of the men who stoned him. Paul knew this! It wasn't as though it was wiped from his memory, but he also knew he'd been forgiven, transformed, and made a new creature in Christ.
It is because Paul knew who he had become, who he was in the present that he could unequivocally write to the church in Rome, and introduce himself as first, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, second, called to be an apostle, and third, separated to the gospel of God.
This is who he now was. This is who he had now become, but Paul is also very candid about who he had been, and what he had done in the past, in his epistle to the Romans, as well as all of his other writings.
Paul never let who he had been define who he would become in Christ. By the same token, he never took whom he had been transformed into for granted, or felt as though it was in any way his doing.
Be sure of who you are. Not who you think you might be, not who others say you are, not who your spouse insists you are, but who you are in Christ must be an unshakable certainty in your life.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.