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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Trading Disappointment for Identity

The goal of the process of dealing with disappointment, discouragement and disillusionment is to replace them -one of the great mysteries of the Kingdom. We trade disappointment for out identity in Christ Jesus. We trade discouragement for God’s courage. We trade disillusionment for God’s hope and purpose.

When our dream dies we are disappointed, in our emotions. It can also seem we’ve been dis-appointed, removed, from our actual appointment in life. The dream dies. Now what?

I struggle with remembering my identity and knowing my appointment when I revert to trying to figure everything out. I lose my identity when it was tied to my dream instead in Christ alone. I don’t always walk by faith very well. I like things very planned. I like to know what to expect. I have learned to walk by faith in many areas and in many seasons. When a dream dies it seems to shake me and cause me to question everything, or almost. Maybe that is good. A refocusing, realigning process.
The trouble comes when we confuse the disappointment in our emotions for actually being disappointed or removed. In the very real and powerful emotions of grieving we can think our identity has been lost, but it’s only the dream, and possibly only for a time. We have a God of resurrection.

I think we see this with King David in the Psalms. He expresses his deep disappointment and hurt even to despair. In the end he always comes back to the goodness of God in His promises. He goes through the grief and the pain of a dream dying. He expresses his disappointment but comes back to his divine appointment. He remembers who God is and what God has appointed him for and the promises made to him. We must grieve and go through that process when a dream dies. Even though my dream has died and I'm hurt I have not been disappointed. I still have purpose. I still have calling. I still have good works to accomplish.

God knows who he designed us to be and what he designed us to do. You have an unchanging identity in him. You may have specific verses that remind you of this, hopefully you have words of hope and encouragement others have spoken over you to remind you who you are. If you don’t know what you are appointed for ask God to reveal who he made you to be, find people who see more in you than you see in yourself. And here are some verses to get you started or to add to your list.

We have an identity in Christ and are appointed to do certain things. God appointed you and empowers you to bring Him pleasure.
For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. Philippians 2:13
He appointed you to everlasting life and salvation.
That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. John 3:15-17
He has appointed you a minister of His new covenant, signed in Jesus blood.
Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life. 2 Corinthians 3:5-6
If you’re like me you want a written plan of specific steps, details of your appointment. Go to this class, follow this career, or get involved in this ministry. The verses I listed don’t give that kind of detail. They do give a greater perspective though. God has an appointment for each one in the work of His Kingdom. Knowing that in the general sense gives hope for seeking the specifics. Faith is required to please Him, knowing every step and detail would make faith impossible. 

To learn your specific appointment there are many helpful tools like personality and strength tests. God has placed passion in each heart for different things, those help, too. Other people can give you direction. Most importantly seek the Father. He speaks to you. He knows you. He knows your strengths, weakness, and passions. He alone must be the final authority on your appointment.

We are appointed to praise. We are appointed to encourage one another, build each other up.
I have a great God to glorify. I have a great commission to fulfill. I have a family to love.

I'm realizing as I reread this I did not include verses for my identity in Christ. I'll try to come back and add some. What are your favorite?

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