Identity || Tony Roos
“I used to be somebody.”
This is a phrase I have often spoken over this last year. You see at the end of December 2011 God took my family from typical suburban America to just outside of Paris France. Close to everything that I identified myself as was stripped away.
- Pastor, Speaker , Coach , Leader, Friend
These are just a few of the names I had identified myself with with. They were name tags I wore with pride. But when you move to a country where you do not speak the language it is hard to claim any of those above titles as your own. Joshua and his family moved to France about the same time as we did says it this way, “I am smart in another language.”
It was not even that I changed jobs or got demoted or fired or anything, it is that I lost the ability to communicate even the most simple of things.
The day our language school teacher took us to the library and walked us through how to get a library card was probably one of the lower points in my identity crisis. I went from leading conferences and youth pastors, to being led by the hand to the library like a kindergartner. It felt like she was saying, ” And this is a book, and this is how you open a book, and if you are nice the lady will give you a lollipop.”
“But isn’t that how we are supposed to be?”
Was the response of a fellow language school student. I wanted to punch her, but after that I thought about her response and realized my identity had been far too wrapped up in my abilities, the things I could do, the positions, I held, the people I knew.
My identity depended far to much on, well, ME.
As I have struggled over this last year to find identity, I have found it very helpful to be reminded of what God thinks of me.
- I am still a Child of God. (John 1:12)
- I am still a friend of God (John 15:15)
- I am still the temple of God (1 Corinthians 3:16)
You see my identity no longer is wrapped up around me. It is in Christ.
What about you?
- Who are you?
- What do you call yourself?
- If everything you are able to do was stripped away would you still have your identity?
- How would that affect…
- our relationships?
- our jobs?
- our future?
|Tony Roos is a husband, father and leads the ENvision Paris short term mission and discipleship site (with the C&MA). When he is not enjoying spending time with his wife and kids he can be found taking things apart and attempting to put them back together. He and his family live just outside of Paris, France where the cheese is as good as they say it is.|
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