“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” Romans 8:15-16 (NIV)
What do you think of when you hear the question, “Who are you?” Maybe you answer this question based on your occupation. I am an accountant, a student, a teacher, a doctor, a businessman or a chef. Maybe you answer based on your relationships. I am a father, a mother, a husband, a wife, a son, a daughter or a friend. Maybe you answer based on what you like doing. I am a musician, an athlete, a bookworm, an adventurer or a gamer. Yet, how many of us would think of ourselves as a child of God?
Imagine being told that you had been adopted by the king of the universe as his very own child. Imagine being told that you had been adopted into a family full of countless brothers and sisters throughout history and around the world. Imagine being told that you had now become an heir to an eternal inheritance. What could be better than that? Yet in Romans, Paul tells us that for this is now the reality for those who have put their faith in Christ. God’s Spirit has brought about our adoption and gives us assurance that we are now God’s children, and this is not anything that we have earned by ourselves. Our adoption is brought about by God’s grace alone.
So, when we are tempted to define ourselves by the world’s standards, let us keep turning to God’s Word to remind ourselves that in Christ God has given us an identity that is so much greater. Furthermore, let’s pray that God would help us to live differently to the world in light of our new identity.