When I was living in Colorado, I heard a story about a woman who worked for United Airlines as a ticket agent at the Denver International Airport. One very cold, wintry day, there was a heavy snowstorm and United Airlines was forced to cancel several flights. As you can imagine, this is always a very stressful and busy time for airport ticket agents.
The lady at the ticket counter was doing her very best to help a long line of people reschedule their flights when an agitated man forced his way past the crowd right up to the very front of the line. He slammed his ticket on the counter and said, “I have to be on this flight and it has to be first class!”
The ticket agent was very kind, smiled and said, “Sir, as you can see there are a lot of people in front of you. I must help them first, however, when it is your turn, I will do my very best to help you.”
The man replied in a pompous, loud way, “Do you have any idea who I am?”
Calmly and sweetly, she picked up the microphone and said, “Excuse me ladies and gentleman, we have a man up here at the front desk who does not know who he is. If anyone can please help him find his identity, please come to the front.”
I don’t think this man is alone. I believe one of the fundamental problems Christians have is that we really don’t understand who we truly are.
Several years ago, I was going through a rough time and was very depressed. A friend of mine told me, “You know what you need to do? You need to read through the entire New Testament and every time you see the words, ‘You are …’ you need to write down the description of how God sees you.”
I took his advice to heart and here is a song I wrote that came from this exercise.
You are going to heaven.
Your name is written in the book.
Your sins have been forgiven.
You are more than conquerors.
You are saved, you are forgiven, you are the salt of the earth.
You are healed, you are alive, you’ve been given new birth.
You are born again and walking in the newness of life.
You are holy, you are clean, you’ve been clothed with Christ.
You are the heir to the Kingdom.
You are a stranger in the world.
You are Christ’s ambassador.
You’re a proclaimer of His Word.
You are the light of the world, the aroma of Christ.
You are a servant, you are a saint, a living sacrifice.
You are the Temple of His Spirit, you are a jar of clay.
You are ready, you are watchful for His return someday.
You are One, you are free, you are united with me.
You are a son or a daughter adopted by a King.
You are the children of the promise, you are Abraham’s seed.
You are alive for eternity.
Now become what you are.
Dear Holy Father, we thank you that “if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here” (2 Corinthians 5:17). Thank you for giving us new identities through Christ. Help us to become what we are. In Jesus Christ’s Holy Name, amen.
Russ Whitten preaches every Sunday at the 9:30 a.m. Harbor Worship Service at Brotula’s Restaurant, 210 US 98 in Destin and then at the 11:30 a.m. service at The Downtown Church, meeting at Enlightened Studios, 144 Miracle Strip Parkway SE in Fort Walton Beach. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.