How We Define Ourselves | Today’s Christian Woman

29 May

gods story What is our place in God’s story? Where do we fit in? How can we acknowledge God as the chief character in our lives and what does it look like when we do?

At TACC this past Sunday we heard Rev. John Howe’s words from 1694 paint a vivid portrait of what our new Christian lives can look like, “. . . a mighty power from God coming upon their souls, conforming them to God, addicting them to God, uniting them with God, making them to center in God, taking them off from all this world. . . . It is a great thing to be a Christian!”

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” Ephesians 4:22-24

The following article discusses how parents can focus on internal transformation and other-centeredness while guiding their children towards a life featuring God. It can also be viewed from an adult perspective and applied to our own lives as we seek to live a God authored life for His glory.

How We Define Ourselves (excerpt)

What would it look like if we parented a generation of young people to define themselves by what they did do? What if they were defined by their actions of justice and mercy, forgiveness and love, strength and courage, generosity and humility and faithfulness?

The danger in merely focusing on our children’s outward behavior without the inner transformation is that sometimes our children will align their behavior to our mandates to please us or receive approval. They can end up doing or not doing these things without true spiritual healing inside. Without this supernatural transformation, we may have moral or obedient children, but we don’t necessarily have spiritual children.

Before long, after the external motivations for obedient behavior are eliminated, our children will grow up and determine life for themselves: They will have been transformed by God’s Spirit, or they will have chosen to live sinfully without any desire to change, or they will hide their sin and live a double life. But a spiritual life is one that is transformed and out of hiding.

As children, our world is very small. We see everything from our vantage point and how it affects us directly or indirectly. It’s only as we mature (hopefully) that we begin to see the world as much more complex, and we begin to see our role as servants addressing the needs of those around us. Therefore, one role of the Christian parent is to train our children to shift from self-centeredness to other-centeredness.

Of course, this selflessness comes from knowing Jesus personally and committing our very lives to the power that is available to us from God.

While today’s culture is telling our children that life is “all about me,” we can direct them to think about the fact that life is really “all about God.” God’s Word is basically a love story—a story of the lover pursuing his created ones in order to have a personal relationship with each one of them. In his story, he is the main character; he is the perfect Lover and the perfect Redeemer.

Sometimes I am tempted to believe that I am the main character, that the story is really about me—because after all, I am in every scene. But that’s a lie.

Can you see how dangerous Satan’s lie is? If he can get me to believe that this life is a story centered around me and my happiness, then I will see life as a series of events that allow me either to succeed or fail in this endeavor. I begin to subtly make decisions that will be to my own benefit.

The entire article by Michelle Anthony can be viewed here:How We Define Ourselves | Today’s Christian Woman.

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One Response to “How We Define Ourselves | Today’s Christian Woman”

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  1. How We Define Ourselves | Today's Christian Woman | Connect to … | Church Ministry - June 17, 2013

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