“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” 1 Pet. 2:9 (NIV)
Last week I introduced the second of our 3 God-placed needs…the need for identity and worth as a person. God placed that need within us so that we would satisfy it through our relationship with Him. We have worth, not only because we are created in God’s image, but as Peter reminds us… we are also His special possession.
Our worth and identity are bestowed on us by God.
This means we can’t earn our worth. God gives it to us.
However…the world tells us that we can earn our worth. If we happen to be fortunate to have a career that is valued by the world, our worth as a person is greater in the eyes of the world. If we are less fortunate and find ourselves in a career less valued by the world, our worth as a person seems lessened.
This causes us to put extraordinary emphasis on doing…rather than being.
Even within the church, there is too much emphasis on doing.
The church may connect our worth as a person with the frequency of our church attendance or our ability to avoid certain questionable behaviors not clearly labeled as sin in Scripture. This can cause members of one church to incorrectly believe they have more worth in God’s eyes than members of another denomination. Christianity then becomes a competition over who attends the most church services or who has the best behavior.
God tells us that our worth is derived from who we are…not what we do.
To the extent we believe that our worth is tied to our actions, we will be driven…even within our Christian walk.
Being driven is the opposite of shalom.
God doesn’t want us to be driven in our relationship with Him. He wants us to rest in Him…trust in Him…abide in Him. That only comes as we purposefully seek to derive our worth and identity from who we are in Christ. And when we abide in Him…our behavior takes care of itself.
Prayer: Lord, show me how I’ve sought to earn Your love, and help me rest my worth solely in You.