It is amazing to me how tangled up our identity can become with so many different parts of who we are. Many times, all our attributes, talents, roles, and positions in life are so entangled that we are no longer a person but some merged identity. In our culture when you meet a new person you ask what they do, hoping their career can give insight to who this person is. Many of us make the mistake of learning a person’s career and then locking them into that role completely. If a person is a lawyer it defines him completely. If that person is a stay-at-home-mom it defines her.
No one word, title, or role can define a person. Each person was created in the image and likeness of God. We were created as complimentary beings with hundreds of different attributes, talents, and unique gifts from God.
We were not created to be “mom,” “doctor,” “teacher,” etc. God had more in mind for each of us. It’s easier to relate with others if we can define them and put them in a category, that’s how our minds work, but that’s not who we really are. We are children of God growing, changing, evolving, loving, falling, rising, and learning how to become fully human.
When we find one word to define our identity we stunt that growth. Even if I am a teacher today, that doesn’t mean I will be one tomorrow. We are every moment of our past, each experience we have lived, and dreams of our future. We are more than a word; our identity is more than we can define.
So stop defining others. Instead look for all the good and love her just as she is, stay open to who she will become, and let her grow into the fullest human she can be, in the likeness of her creator.
Copyright 2017 Lori Hadorn-Disselkamp