Who are You?
(Psalm 4 NIV) For the director of music. With stringed
instruments. A psalm of David. Answer me when I call to you, O my righteous God.
Give me relief from my distress; be merciful to me and hear my prayer. How long,
O men, will you turn my glory into shame ? How long will you love delusions and
seek false gods ? Selah Know that the LORD has set apart the godly for himself;
the LORD will hear when I call to him. In your anger do not sin; when you are on
your beds, search your hearts and be silent. Selah Offer right sacrifices and
trust in the LORD. Many are asking, "Who can show us any good?" Let the light of
your face shine upon us, O LORD. You have filled my heart with greater joy than
when their grain and new wine abound. I will lie down and sleep in peace, for
you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.
Search your hearts and be silent. In the King James it says to commune with your own heart. The New American Standard says to meditate in your heart. What it comes down to is knowing thyself. Search thy heart, examine thyself. Looking into the New Testament we can see how we are told to examine ourselves.
(1 Corinthians 11:28 KJV) But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
(2 Corinthians 13:5 KJV) Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
In this subject we must know who we are before we can become the people we ant to be. We need to know that we are sinners in need of a savior. We need to know that we who have put our trust in Jesus are redeemed and new creations in Christ Jesus. We need to look deep within our hearts and know that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit and in us dwells the creative power of the universe. There is within you who have become Children of God through Christ Jesus have unlimited potential.
Today I want us to look at what makes up who we are and in that examination we can compare that to who God would have us be and knowing the difference we will better be able to align ourselves with the will of God.
Having a right view of ourselves is perhaps the most important thing to being happy with ourselves. I remember one man's definition of integrity. It was being who you really are. In other words not being a hypocrite or a wanna be. To thy own self be true was how Shakespeare put it. In order for us to achieve the fullness of our potential we must first know our personal strengths and weaknesses. We need to know our personality type and discover what it is that naturally brings us the feeling of belonging.
There is nothing worse then a person who is naturally introverted pushing themselves to act as an extrovert. There is nothing worse then living a lie. Who are you? better yet, who is it that God has called you to be? Are you on the path to self discovery or do you find yourself simply going with the flow and taking whatever life throws your way. The real question is found in that Psalm 4: Do you lie down in peace? As we take a look today at what makes up who we are, let's apply what we learn to become more like Jesus. For He is the author and finisher of our faith and the king of peace.
Let's start by taking a broad view of who we are as human beings. We have discovered in the past and know that man, like God are tri-une, or have basically three different parts that make up the one. With God there is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. With Man we have the Body, Spirit and Soul.
Now let's re-define body, spirit and soul. The body we know is our physical beings. our bodies are the flesh and blood that feels pleasure and pain. It is often called the carnal man. In fact did you know that that was where the word carnival comes from. It carnival actually means without flesh. It was first used to describe the celebration of feasting before the forty day fast of lent. We also know it today as Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras. (But I digress)
It is this carnal man, our physical bodies that manifest the thoughts and desires of our inner selves. Now this is where the trouble begins. Because we all know that our bodies cause us a lot of trouble of themselves. We hunger and experience far too much pain. We have biological and physiological urges that compel us to act and do things that end up being contrary to our re-generated selves. That is going to take us to our spirit.
The spirit of man can somewhat be called our mind. This is where the decisions are made. Who we are is made up of all the genetic DNA of our ancestors combined with everything we have ever experienced in life. Within our mind we can separate it into two separate categories called the conscience and the subconscious mind. Our subconscious mind holds within it every memory of everything we have ever heard, said, thought, seen, experienced or imagined. The Human mind is in fact a true computer that gives you what it is fed. In other words, garbage in, garbage out. So depending upon the amount of garbage that has been fed into your subconscious mind will be a great determining factor in the way your conscious mind handles all the current input. It is this conscious mind that thinks and feels and weighs the different factors of any given situation and moves us to action.
Blah, blah, blah blah.... is anyone board yet? Hang in there we will get to the application soon.
OK, so we have this great computer between our ears which has kept a record of everything we have ever done, both the right and the wrong. Knowing the mistakes that we have made it is only logical that our mind realize that we have fallen short of the glory of a righteous God. It makes perfect sense to us that because of our sin, we could not be a part of a perfect society. It is kind of like the idea if you ever find a perfect Church don't go there because you will ruin it. So if we can not logically live up to being in the presence of God which is life then the wages of our sin is death. It is our mind or spirit which needs to be renewed if we are to experience any chance of that hope of heaven.
OK, we all know that there is no way that there is anything that we could do to make up for the wrong that we have done. There is no way that we can earn our way into heaven. Then it is only by a complete and total forgiveness and new beginning that we can even logically accept the place that God has for us.
OK, that covers our body and our spirit, what about our soul. That is the eternal part of us that weighs in the balance. It is in our heart of hearts that our true self lies. The problem is that our spirit even when regenerated has to continually deal with the physical body which is not regenerated. The truth is that the grave is calling us all far too loudly. Our hearts though stout and brave still like muffled drums are beating funeral marches to the grave. So we have a body that wants to get as much pleasure out of the little time it is given upon this earth and a Spirit which now knows that there is all eternity to look forward to and our soul waiting in the midst looking for our day of salvation.
Is any of this making any sense?
Look at it this way; here you are a new creation in Christ Jesus trying every day to live a good and righteous life when still within your physical body is all the memories of who you use to be, along with your physical bodies screaming to be satisfied.
So, Let me ask you again, Who are you?
If our goal, and I believe it is the goal of everyone whether they know it or not, is to be at peace with ourselves we are going to have to discover how to bring our body and our mind willingly under the influence of the Holy Spirit of God rather then our old spirit of death.
So, how do we do that? Let me think..... How did you get to be the way you were in the first place? By listening to the people around you. By watching the actions of others. By experiencing life around us. If all of that has made up who we are then the same things are going to have to be used to be the person who we have been called to be. It is almost like the old reactive /proactive action. We can either simply react to the situations around us or we can proactively move through the situations around us to where we want to be. It has been sucesss is not determined by our situations but how we react to them.
So, Who are you. Yes, you are the sum of all of your past experiences. But the question that is most important is in those experiences have you had an encounter with the God of all creation. It was asked of me this week and I have not yet answered it what you do after you have a face to face encounter with God. Where do we go from there? We go forward. We grow in that experience. We have the wonderful opportunity to step outside ourselves and see all of our mistakes and know that all of our sins have been washed away by the blood of Jesus. All the generational curses have been broken. All the strongholds have been torn down. All the things that caused us to fear have been defeated. Even death and the grave have been won over. Where do we go form there? We meditate in our heart, we search our souls, we lift up our bodies and make ourselves a living sacrifice.
Now is the time of your salvation. Right now. Be continually renewed in your spirit. If you were who you were by what you listened to, then now you need to listen to the voice of God. Who's report are we going to believe. I believe the report of the LORD. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of the LORD. Renew your mind daily by getting into the word of God. If you were who you use to be by the things you saw then you need to keep your eyes on the things of God and away from the things of the world. And you know exactly what I am talking about. God says to seek His face. The eyes are the window of the soul. It was when Eve looked upon the forbidden fruit that she saw it was good to eat. Sin of the eye, sin of the flesh and the pride of life.
Now be renewed. Now accept your salvation which comes form Jesus Christ and Him alone. There is no other name by which we can be saved. Trust in Him and learn more and more about Him. You know how you end up being like the people you are around. Get around Jesus and be more like Him. Seek Him when you get up in the morning. Seek Him when you go through your day. seek Him in the night hours.
Who are you. You are made in the very image of God. Within you dwells the unlimited creative power of the universe and when you align that with the realization of God's purpose for your life that my friend is the goal of all goals. Who are you? You are a child of God. Who are you? You are His.