Amazingly, we had been talking about that in our small group and in our worship service on Sunday. Except, what we learned is that we have a God who through what Jesus Christ accomplished through his death and resurrection draws us to go beyond where we were. This God invites us into a new life leaving the past behind. This God invites us to fly like a butterfly and not crawl like a caterpillar. Too often we crawl even though we are a butterfly. This God invites us to leave our slings behind; too often, even though we are healed, we keep wearing our sling or cast.
The Liz Murray story makes no mention of spirituality. But somehow, through self-effort I guess, she breaks the mold of being a homeless unschooled teenager and amazingly ends up at Harvard. There is only one teacher who is cheering her on and encouraging her throughout the whole movie.
We have a God who through Jesus Christ and the work of his Spirit tries to draw us from our old life into a new one. He wants us to have a new image of ourselves. This God wants us to know we are his children, we are loved, we belong, and we are his treasured possession, along with so much more. Too often though, we grasp our old image and not our new image that God has given us. If we could only grasp our identity in what God considers us to be through Jesus Christ, we could experience so much more joy and peace. We need to listen to God's voice as he speaks through the Bible, prayer, circumstances and the church, for he will give us a new vision of ourselves.
Strangely enough, this very morning I was reading John 1:35-42. Jesus gave Simon a new name, Peter. This man, who spoke brashly what he thought and had many ups and downs, was now going to be known as a rock- the meaning of the name Peter. Jesus gave him a new identity of who he was. From then on, he was going to be drawn and changed by Jesus into this new person. He had to leave this old image of himself and accept a new image of himself - a God given image of himself. That is what we all need to do.
Who defines you?