What You Do Is Not Who You Are

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How is your private life with God? Is your public life an outflow of your time with Him? Or is your life ruled by other concerns? If you recognize that you have been making poor choices in private, pray.

History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new. Ecclesiastes 1:9 NLT

There is nothing new under the sun. No want or wish that is being pursued today has not already been sought before our time. It is no secret that our culture seeks favor and approval. We have designated days for sharing selfies, and some people follow complete strangers on social media for the sole reason of acquiring more likes or favorites. So much online behavior screams, “Like me! Affirm me! Tell me I fit in!” But this form of approval is solely based on the public perspective of who you are. If your popularity wavers, where does that leave you? Back at the beginning, feeling insufficient or unworthy.

It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. (Psalm 118:8 NKJV)

Who we are in private much more accurately represents who we really are than what is seen in public does. Poor decisions made in private almost always lead to lack of favor in public. Are the sinful choices to gossip, cheat, or steal made publicly or privately? Such choices begin in the privacy of our thought lives.

The adverse is also true: we have the ability to cultivate our lives in private. Through right relationship with God, our thought lives can be purified. Our motives are weighed and revealed when we spend alone time with Him.

When we don’t spend time with God, we will try to fill the lack inside with other things that do not satisfy, like the approval of others. Only God can satisfy our deepest longings and heal our most painful hurts. When we take the time to embrace His presence, all of our unmet expectations and failures can be laid to rest.

Lovely one, it is time to believe that you have worth. God doesn’t base His opinion of you on your Facebook friends, retweets, or Instagram likes. He embraces you for who you are, not what you do. He sees who you are in private, when no one else is around, and His love for you does not waver. He is more concerned about who you become as you spend time alone with Him than He is about anything you might accomplish before men.

How is your private life with God? Is your public life an outflow of your time with Him? Or is your life ruled by other concerns? If you recognize that you have been making poor choices in private, pray:

Father, forgive me of seeking the approval of those around me. I’ve lost focus on the Source of my worth, and I know that only You can restore me. You are more than enough for me. I want Your favor more than I want popularity with others. Restore a healthy balance to my life as I renew my mind with the knowledge of who I am in You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Adapted from Fight Like a Girl (Faith Words, 2006).

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