As I have thought more about it, this is a life principle that can be pretty formational, if not transformational to the different groups that I have recently spoken to or lead in some form. So listen up!
In our lives, we always are trying to discover who we are. Whether it is who we are in relationship to our family, our jobs or the people around us, we are all on an expedition, searching for meaning. The problem is that we try to find that definition through the activities that we take part in or the people we associate with. The issue with this approach is that we can very easily, if not in all cases, allow those opportunities or relationships define who we are and what we are about. In the end, we become a product of our surroundings and the people who have influence on us. By doing this, it becomes that much easier to lose our identity in ourselves, but also our identity in Christ.
And this is a terrible atrocity that has taken place in the American Church today. Not just in my walk, or NMC Senior High. This is something that has permeated the American Church and continues to provide disunity and grumbling because it causes all of us to desire other people to fulfill roles that they are not equipped for due to the lack of effort by those who are equipped for these roles.
It is always a mistake to decide what you're going to do or who you're going to associate with before you decide who you're going to be.
It is a simple principle that becomes more of an empowerment than a burden once we take the time to work through it. Here are the three simple steps that Andy gave at Passion and I relayed on Wednesday that will give you clarity on how to get to a point of knowing Who you are so that you can prioritize people and situations in a way that keeps your integrity and identity intact.
1. Decide/Make a list of the qualities that will make up your BE-ING.
2. Develop the WHY you will be that person.
3. Begin to find ways to live out the qualities that you desire to be a part of the fabric of your BE-ING.
If you allow yourself some time to develop these qualities, you will find it easier and more empowering to say, "No" and "Yes" to those things that God has prepared for you.
For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. - Ephesians 2:10