I am NOT who you say I am.

There are 4 minutes and thirty-one seconds where I feel on fire!

Where I feel strong, loved, victorious, and that I belong.

In those four minutes I feel like I am on top of a mountain.

In those moments  I am invincible to the limitless possibilities that are ahead in my life.

Right now these moments happen while I am listening to a song, Lauren Daigle, “You Say”, have you heard it?  It is rocking my world and reminding me of where my identity is rooted, of where I belong, of how strong I am, and how loved I am, how strong I don’t realize I am, and that I am held in the middle of every moment.

When the melody plays and the lyrics echo in my headphones, I believe it.  It all feels true, and nothing negative matters except the truth of God’s view of me, His daughter.  He calls me His own and I choose in those four minutes to believe every line.  (Ok, sometimes it takes me two minutes into the song to believe it, but I get there)

BUT…when the song is over, here’s the truth…I am fighting a constant battle, not the battle of who it is God says I am, but with a mind that is flooded with traumatic moments where people have told me words that are NOT in line with what God says about me. My identity can quickly get labeled by the wrong voices when my ears aren’t flooded with God’s truth.

So what do we do in those moments?  In those moments when the song on the radio that pumps up my spirit isn’t on?  In the moments when our mental message machine of negative words that have been spoken about us plays on repeat in our minds?

How do we find truth in the middle of the lie campaign that is trying to take our thoughts captive?

While I love the lyrics from “You Say”, maybe you’re in a similar battle, that when the song turns off we spend most of our day saying “I am NOT who you say I am” to those voices from our past, or it could be a voice/situation from yesterday.

Maybe one of these floats through your mind more often than you’d like it to:

“I am NOT what was said about me”

“I am NOT defined by what I’ve been through”

“Who I am is NOT declared by the oppression I have faced”

“I am NOT a current symbol of my past regrets”

“I am NOT fully abandoned because I have been abandoned”

“I am NOT what that email/text message wrote about me”

“I am NOT what that situation/job said about me”

“My identity is NOT the rumor with my name on it”

“I am NOT who YOU say I am”

If one of those struck a chord with you, then let’s fight this mental battle together.  I need this reminder today, and maybe you do as well. Here’s two ways we can turn our thoughts to where they need to be:

    • Think about it.  When we focus on the negative thoughts and the negative circumstances we have been through, what we are doing is putting WAY too much attention on the wrong YOU instead of the right one.  The YOU in your thoughts is either what God says about you, or filled with who “they” or “that situation” said about us.  One of those will dictate the direction of your thoughts today, so choose wisely who is your YOU.
    • Here’s where we get lost – when we don’t even know how God sees us, when we don’t believe that we have been adopted, redeemed, and called His own.  When we feel unnoticed and unrecognized because we struggle to believe that this same God gave up everything to be in a personal and intimate relationship with you!  When we don’t believe what God says about us, we will get stuck in the feedback loop that we are what the world, what our parents, what our co-workers, what our past, what our relationships, and what our failures say about us.  There will be nothing else to turn to except the harsh validations of the world when you don’t know who it is that your Creator sees when He looks at you.

If you need a reminder today of where to focus, and what thoughts to center on, today I want you to proclaim the words Peter says to us in 1 Peter 2:9,10, and some of you are hearing these words for the very first time: “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His possession, so that you may proclaim the praises of the One who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but NOW you are God’s people, you had not received mercy, but NOW you have received mercy.”

Are your thoughts reflective of someone who has been pulled OUT of the darkness and centered on the Sprit’s marvelous light?

Read those words on repeat, let this message be the new words that play over and over again in your head until they are louder than the reminders in your head keeping you from peace. This is truth, this is the written word, this is the living word alive in you, and alive in me.  May we all follow the words directly from the mouth of Jesus (Matthew 11:28) “Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

My mind is weary, my thoughts are tired, my brain needs to rest.  The negativity needs to be put to bed and laid at the feet of the cross so that I can look up and gaze into the eyes of my Savior, my Father, my Crafter, my Creator, my Friend, my Leader.  I am who He says I am.  And so are you.

We are loved, and today, I declare that I am NOT who you (fill in with the voice of your negativity) say I am, because I am who YOU (the God of all creation) say I am.


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