Who are you? Who would you be if you felt free to reach your full potential?
A young, single mom called into the Rush Limbaugh show. She thanked Rush for giving her the courage to believe in herself and pursue her dreams to work for the FBI. “After I got pregnant, my Mom and pretty much everybody in my family told me, ‘well you’ll just have to get a job and get by the best you can now. No way can you finish college and go into law enforcement,’ and similar discouraging things. Thank you for giving me the vision to believe I could achieve my dreams and the courage to go out and try, to believe I was worth it.”
My first thought was: Why is Rush Limbaugh doing that for people? Why isn’t that happening in Churches?
Let me put it to you this way: When you stand and look in the mirror what kind of person do you see? Who are you? Do you believe that you are “worth it?”
Some of us look in the mirror and see people we are really disappointed in. Some of us see people who “haven’t lived up to expectations.” Some of us see failures. Some of us see the unlovely and unloved. But believers in Christ, people who have asked Christ to save them from their sins and submitted to him as Lord, have a new identity. Take a look at the following verses and see what God sees when he looks at you.
v Col. 2:13 - You have been “made alive with Christ” and are no longer “dead in trespasses and sins.”
v Col. 3:1 – You have been “raised with Christ” and your life is now “hidden with Christ in God.”
v Heb. 10: 10 – You have been “made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Christ once for all.”
v Rom. 5:1 – You have been justified – completely forgiven and made righteous in the sight of God. (See also 5:19)
v Rom. 8:1 – You are free forever from condemnation.
v 1 Cor. 1:30 – You have been placed into Christ by God’s doing.
v 1 Cor. 2:12 – You have received the Spirit of God into your life that you might know the things freely given to you by God.
v 1 Cor. 2:16 – You have been given the mind of Christ.
v 1 Cor. 6: 19-20 – You have been bought with a price; You are not your own; You belong to God.
v 1 Thess. 1:4 & Jude 1:1 – You are loved by God, chosen by him and called by him.
You are a righteous, complete, accepted, beloved and chosen person in Christ. You have, according to Colossians 2:10, been given “fullness in Christ.” This is what God says is true of you and of every believer. You may not feel that these things are true of you. But what we feel and what is true are often two different things. The question is not: What do you feel about yourself? The question is: Do you believe what God says about your identity?
What You Believe Determines Who You Will Become
Proverbs says, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” That’s wisdom. What you believe about your identity, what you tell yourself in your heart, will determine what you become.
Tom Friends of The New York Times asked coach Jimmy Johnson what he told his players before leading the Dallas Cowboys onto the field for the 1993 Super Bowl.
"I told them that if I laid a two-by-four across the floor, everybody there would walk across it and not fall, because our focus would be on walking the length of that board. But if I put that same board 10 stories high between two buildings, only a few would make it, because the focus would be on falling."
Johnson told his players not to focus on the crowd, the media, or the possibility of falling, but to focus on each play of the game as if it were a good practice session. The Cowboys won the game 52-7.
So if a Christian sees himself, focuses on himself, as unholy, unlovable, unworthy and incompetent, what kind of man or woman is he/she going to be? Depressed, insecure, resentful and angry, right? Why? Because life for a defeated Christian feels like a game you can’t win, a role where you can never remember all the lines, a set of expectations that are impossible to meet. It feels like a two-by-four you have to cross that’s ten stories high.
How attractive is a defeated, self-loathing Christian to the unbelieving world? “Oh yeah, that’s just what I need, something else to make me feel guilty and increase misery.”
Depressed people don’t dream dreams. Insecure people won’t take risks. Angry people can’t build lasting friendships. But what happens to a man or woman who begins to believe in his worth, his value, his competence, and his goodness? That man or woman becomes a world changer. That person will invest himself in life, in dreams that change things, and make life better for himself and everybody else.
So let me ask you again: Who are you? What does God think of you? Is he proud of you? Does he love you? Does he dream a great future for you? And do you believe it?
 Steve Chandler in 100 Ways to Motivate Yourself. Fresh Illustrations for Preaching & Teaching (Baker), from the editors of Leadership