When who we are is lost by what we lose

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Being a disciple means that we do not identify with things but find our identity in Christ. What can we expect to see happen to those who identify themselves in what they do and what they own? When Jesus calls us to give everything up in order to follow Him, in order to be His disciple, we should focus on being “His” and understand that this is our new identity in Christ Jesus. When we do this, our identity which was previously attached to what we do and what we own will no longer be, and this is important because we won’t be lost when we lose what we have.

When people identify themselves in what they are attached to and then through some circumstance are separated from them they can so easily experience the loss of their personal identity. As we consider identity along with attachments, we can understand how marriage being the attachment of man and woman, according to the commands of God, can be so fruitful and so painful, when two become one and for one to be taken to glory.  As I recently heard someone say when two become one and one goes to glory, they are left feeling like half a person.

Holding On

The fear that people have of letting go is rooted in identity and attachments. Our material attachments are that which we must use wisely, enjoy and thank God for, and since many of these attachments are blessings, we must remember that we are never to love them and use God, treating the gift with greater affection than the giver. Rather, we are to always use the gifts and love the giver and remain conscious of never confusing the two. In many ways attachments provide stability, though they shouldn’t, we should be stable without them. Nevertheless, they carry great weight when it comes to influencing our emotions. The fear of losing them is often felt in the emotions and imagination long before we ever have actually lost them. Fear attaches itself to us in the form of emotion and even confusion often to the same extent that we are attached to what we do and what we have.

Stability

The call of Jesus to be a disciple is to give everything up and follow Him, to be free from being attached to the things of this world, though we may enjoy many of them and so we should, for they are from God. The call to be a disciple is a call to become identified with Christ Jesus, who will never leave us. Knowing that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus is to know our foundation. What can we lose when we have given everything up to follow Jesus and live in the knowledge that we cannot lose Jesus?

By Daniel Ralph

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