When I was young I listened to rock and roll bands, and one of my favorites was The Who. The name of the band is indicative of the main theme of many of their song lyrics–who we are or what is our true identity. One of their songs from the album Quadrophenia was titled “Can You See The Real Me?” The protagonist of the song visits his psychologist, his own mother, and also the local priest, all to ask them if they could see who he really was—Can you see the real me? Years later The Who continued on with this theme in the lyrics of their song “Who Are You?”
So, if someone asked you this simple question, “Who Are You, Really?” would you know how to answer? What is your true identity? Will the real you finally stand up, or don’t you know the real you? The real you is not what you do for a living, or the level of your education, or even the religion you adhere to. Unfortunately, almost all of us have to recover our true identity because we lost it somewhere on the path of life. We are all in recovery, many of us from drugs and alcohol, but in reality, we are all in recovery from the effects of sin. Thus, the Christian life might be seen as the process of recovering our real identity–the true you.
Scripture & Prayer (Luke 4:18-19)
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Recovering The Real You
Jesus said, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me… now listen to this … to proclaim recovery of sight to the blind.” Recovery of sight to the blind! I was blind … but now I see!
What is the blindness that is being recovered: the blindness to who you truly are. Recovery of your personhood, your dignity, your humanity, your future! This morning I want to proclaim three steps to recovering the true you.
Recovering Your Image As A Creation Of God (Genesis 1)
First, of all you, you will remember that you are made, created, in the image of God.
Gen. 1:26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
Every human being has the spark of God imbedded in their DNA. There is something divine about who you are. You were created to be in relationship with God, to live with God, to reign with Him.
Recovering Your Identity As A Child Of God In Christ (John 1)
Yet after our fall from grace, after we rejected God and embraced sin, we were separated from God. So, we needed a bridge back to God. We needed to be made right, and there was nothing in ourselves that could do that.
So, God sent His Son, Jesus Christ; God became human, Divine but Human, to make things right. The Apostle John says these incredible words, listen to this, “Yet to all who received Christ, to those who trusted in Jesus, He gave the right to become children of God—children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.”
Born of God, created in the image of God, born of the will of God, to become His very dear own children. You are a child of God. You are more than a conqueror; you reign with the King of the Universe.
If someone asks you who you are, you will now say, “I am the son or daughter of my Father. Do you know my Father. He is God! I am a son or daughter of God, that’s who I am.” Amen!
Recovering From That Which Tried To Separate You From Who You Are (Proverbs 23)
But some of us just can’t keep that image and that relationship first in our lives. We continue to seek the forbidden fruit, and when God comes to find his children, we run and put on our fig leaves, because we were afraid. We were ashamed. Instead of the robes of righteousness God has given us in Christ, we discard them for fig leaves to cover our guilt and our shame.
So, we hide behind drugs, or alcohol, or our jobs, or sex, or whatever addiction that gave us a temporary feeling that we were someone else, someone great, someone rich, someone important, someone who didn’t hurt inside.
Listen to Proverbs 23: “Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has strife? Who has complaints? Who has needless bruises? Who has bloodshot eyes? Those who linger over wine, who go to sample bowls of mixed wine. Do not gaze at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it goes down smoothly! In the end it bites like a snake and poisons like a viper. Your eyes will see strange sights, and your mind will imagine confusing things. You will be like one sleeping on the high seas, lying on top of the rigging. “They hit me,” you will say, “but I’m not hurt! They beat me, but I don’t feel it! When will I wake up so I can find another drink?”
When are we gonna wake up and see that those things don’t satisfy?
We must not be converted one day, say a little prayer to invite Jesus into our hearts and think that everything’s going to be fine. Jesus said in this world you will have trouble (not may have trouble, not some days, not just some of you). We need to be converted every day, each day, one day at a time, easy does it! We need to realize, when we look in the mirror every morning, that we are children of God, a special creation, worthy of the love of God, and destined to reign with Him.
Can you see the real you? I can. But more important God can, because He created and loves the real you.
(c) Paul Dordal, 2013