/ / Knowing Who You Are In Christ – Your Spiritual Identity in 2021

Knowing Who You Are In Christ – Your Spiritual Identity in 2021

Not knowing who you really are as a child and where and how you fit in can affect you for many, many years and impact all aspects of your relationships, including your relationship with God. Knowing who you are in Christ and what the Bible says about you can be extremely healing. 

So let’s look at some of the things God has to say about you that can replace what you lost, those old tapes you play from the past, and heal wounds from years of not having a clear view of who you are!

a beautiful smiling black woman with short hair and a beige blouse looking upwards and smiling with her fingers on her chin and text that says Knowing Who You Are in Christ Jesus - Your Spiritual Identity in 2021

Updated and republished from Aug 26, 2019

Losing Your Identity – My Own Story

My Childhood in the City

When I was 12 years old, my family made the move from Manhattan to Long Island. It was not a move I was happy about at all.

I had friends in Manhattan that I knew for nearly my whole life. I attended a private school where I was in the gifted program (yeah…that didn’t last long!) so I got to spend a chunk of my day in special classes.

The other chunk I spent being a runner for two of my teachers (who clearly had a crush) who wanted to send notes to each other. Nothing inappropriate of course. It was mostly a cute kind of bantering back and forth. I enjoyed reading them (they did not attempt to hide them as they were innocent enough and they were both single) and I enjoyed being their chosen messenger even more!ir?source=bk&t=live31 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=bcd86bebab6d0c0716ef8995bf2d49bc& cb=1545153390881

So school was always so much fun for me!

I used to love going to block parties all summer with my friends. My mother never knew where I was and that was ok; everyone watched everyone else’s kids in the neighborhood and we all knew to be home when the street lights came on.

It was the late 70’s after all and it was a simpler time!

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I enjoyed chasing the ice cream man down the street after my mother would hurl a sandwich bag of coins out of our 3rd story window!ir?source=bk&t=live31 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=e832d3aef0ab605dc8912bbcb2f3564d& cb=1545153420965

Then there was my older sister going to get the infamous wrench from the fire department so she could open up the fire hydrant for us kids to play in! In the evening, a big truck would roll down the street with rides on its bed; rides like the Whip and a small roller coaster.ir?source=bk&t=live31 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=b23bf167f4a1a6be75ed1a8458793b29& cb=1545153434144

Childhood Summers

Some days my sister and I would bike down to Fort Tryon Park and visit the Cloisters. Other days we might go to High Bridge and go swimming in the huge pools!

In the evening, my grandmother would come out with her lawn chair and sit on the curb, chatting with friends and family. We lived in an apartment building with family members on various floors, as well as across the street.ir?source=bk&t=live31 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=0d6fdb3af3dc109c542cab329add2777& cb=1545153458003

While she sat chatting with everyone, I would play kick the can, the dreaded Red Rover, or tag with my friends.

I might see my older cousin Danny coming down the street. I would spot that red hair from a distance and run over and jump up on him! He would catch me and then perch me up on top of the mailbox that I always tried desperately to climb up on by myself with little success.ir?source=bk&t=live31 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=65468b325ceda918cef35a767146bd86& cb=1545153476595

Summer in Manhattan was like living in a big amusement park surrounded by everyone I loved.


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I Don’t Want to Move

No, I did not want to leave the city. Ever.

But leave we did.

My mother and stepfather both ran a department in a company that was relocating to Long Island and so we relocated as well.

Suburbs? What was that? No, I didn’t want any part of it!

You mean I can’t just walk a block to my favorite pizza place or down the street to the candy store? No block parties? No kick the can? There were no kids? Nope, I don’t want to move!ir?source=bk&t=live31 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=d6655378f2c01e8b21c549d1c7ac5296& cb=1545153512010

I had to go to a new school where I was not in a gifted program because it was a public school; there was none. I was in a huge class and surrounded by faces I did not know, and that seemed to not want to know this kid from the city.

I felt out of place. Everything I identified with was gone! Losing your identity is tough enough for anyone but especially for a child who is soon entering their teens and struggling with who they are anyway!

I was no longer the person I was in the city. I no longer had friends.

Who Is the Real Me?

I wanted to make friends and fit in, but the kids on Long Island were different than the kids in the city. I didn’t know how to relate to them. They liked different things and had different activities than I was used to.

They dressed differently. I had always worn a uniform to school. Now all of a sudden I had to worry about dressing in a certain style for school.

They seemed a bit reluctant to accept this new girl from the city.

So I would create a “me” that people would like so that I could make friends.

I went through my life, from about the age of 13, not knowing the real me.

An image of a beautiful black woman and her daughter sitting on a couch with notebooks like they are writing or studying and text that says Bible Study Methods - Learn to Study the Word for Yourself - 7 Ways in 7 Days, advertising a Bible Study course

Have you ever met someone and ended up picking up characteristics from their personality? I did that ALL the time!

My sassiness came from my friend Stacy.

The love of being fashionable and in style? That came from my friend Robin.

My love of makeup?

ir?source=bk&t=live31 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=cbecb5585120706b6e3f5602652bcd8f& cb=1545153608595Well, I think that one is mine. Oh well, you get the point!

Who is the real me?

I spent the greater part of my life taking aspects of people’s personalities and I realized, I didn’t know who I was!

I was not authentically me! It wasn’t me, it was some sort of conglomeration of everyone I was or tried to be friends with.

I lost my identity at a very young age and, while I managed to eventually fit in with friends in school, it wasn’t as me! Even though not intentional, losing your identity means you wear a mask!

Not knowing who you are in Christ means that mask not only stays on but it evolves over time depending on who you are with.

A woman on a beach with a wrap spread over her outstretched arms and Colossians 1:22 quoted

When You Don’t Fit Into the World Around You

The real me didn’t fit in anywhere anymore.

My family? No, I didn’t fit in there.

I always felt like an outcast because my stepfather had his own daughters, my stepsisters. He had his son, my brother. He and my mother had been married before and divorced.

During their time apart, my mother married my father and had me. They divorced a few years later and she remarried my stepfather, who had also been married to someone else and had my two step-sisters.

So he had children of his own and I never felt like I was good enough; like I was always compared. I felt like I was just someone he inherited. We never got along once I reached my teen years.

Yes, I had my biological dad, who adored me, but he lived over an hour away now and he passed when I was only 21.

When I was older, I didn’t fit in within my marriages. I have been married before, more than once.

I went from marriage to marriage before I was saved, always looking for someone to fill that need for acceptance. Always looking for someone who would love me unconditionally and make me feel accepted.

Not knowing who you are in Christ opens up a door for you to look for who you are in other people’s eyes. The problem with that is everyone will always have a different expectation of who you should be.

Losing your identity makes it more difficult for you to know if someone is right for you, and it makes it difficult for them to even know who THEY are married to.

Losing your identity makes it more difficult for you to know if someone is right for you, and it makes it difficult for them to even know who THEY are married to! Click To Tweet

No matter where I wound up, I didn’t feel I fit in! 

You see, I was focused on fitting in within the world but knowing who you are in Christ is something God placed in you, not what the world tells you that you are! I was looking in the wrong places to mold who I was as a person. I should have looked to God.


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I was focused on fitting in within the world but knowing who you are in Christ is something God placed in you, not what the world tells you that you are! I was looking in the wrong places to mold who I was as a person. I should… Click To Tweet

Lack of Empathy in Relationships

This search for who I was in the wrong places always ended up creating problems.

I never learned to be empathetic or even sympathetic with people because I was too busy sponging from them the parts I admired and trying and trying to develop my own identity.

I couldn’t identify with them because I didn’t even have an identity of my own!

It’s hard to walk a mile in someone’s shoes when you are too busy trying on everyone else’s!

How can you even begin to identify with someone’s feelings when you can’t even identify with yourself?

My multiple marriages never worked out because, not only did I get married way too young and kept choosing the wrong people because I wasn’t mature enough to know what was right for me, but I could not even put myself in a position of understanding THEIR feelings.

As I said earlier, not knowing your spiritual identity makes it difficult for you to discern if someone is right for you because you don’t even know who you are!

How can you determine that someone is the perfect person for you if you don’t even know yourself? How can you feel empathy for a spouse when you can’t even figure out your own feelings?

A lack of empathy really came from a lack of spiritual identity. Losing your identity means it is far more difficult to feel toward people because you are just looking at them to fill a void in your own identity, not getting to really know them or theirs.

It's hard to walk a mile in someone's shoes when you are too busy trying on everyone else's! Click To Tweet

Knowing Who I Am in Christ

Years later, when I was saved and in a happy marriage, I even felt like an outcast in my “spiritual family”. It was that feeling of slipping in undetected and felt I didn’t really belong.

I was always looking for the world and other people to give me my identity and not going to the source of who I am!

It made sense when I wasn’t saved because I didn’t know that source, but once I WAS saved I should have begun to find that identity in the Word instead of struggling with not knowing who I am in Christ.

But, instead of going to the Word to find my identity, I was picking and choosing aspects of other people that I liked and tried to make them my own. After all, if I liked that about their personality, wouldn’t that mean other people would like that about me too? Here I was, repeating the same old pattern. 



When you’ve experienced losing your identity as a child, it doesn’t just magically go away when you get saved. 

I wasn’t worried about the importance of knowing who you are in Christ. I was seeking the approval of man instead of seeking the approval of God. I was believing that who God made me wasn’t good enough just because I had been rejected by one or two people in my life, regardless of how influential (or not) those people may have been.

The problem was, I never allowed anyone to know the real me because there was no real me! Not knowing who you are in Christ and losing your identity is like walking around with an empty cup waiting for other people to fill it.

Losing your identity is like walking around with an empty cup waiting for other people to fill it. Click To Tweet

I was still looking to people to define me, even as a believer.

Knowing Who You Are in Christ - A white fence with colorful flowers in front of it and 1 Corinthians 2:16 quoted

Knowing Your Spiritual Identity- Who God Created You to Be

Not knowing who you are in Christ, losing your identity that HE placed in you, means you are constantly morphing because it is not who God made you! So you will always be looking for yourself! He didn’t make me to mirror other people!

Losing your identity means you are constantly morphing because it is not who God made you! So you will always be looking for yourself! Click To Tweet

I got tired of constantly evolving into someone else and I got tired of feeling like I wasn’t good enough. Losing your identity can create that despondency because you just get exhausted by trying to keep up with who you are TODAY!

Here I was wanting to serve God in ministry but I could not do that without authenticity. I needed to silence the enemy and his lies and really embrace who God made me to be, not who I felt other people would like and accept.

Once I allowed God to do that work in me, once I allowed myself to find the authentic voice in me, that real me began to emerge.

Not knowing who I am in Christ, losing my identity through either childhood experiences or through things that happened in my adult life, doesn’t have to be a life sentence for me and it doesn’t have to be for you either!

You CAN find your spiritual identity and live authentically you, fully and securely knowing your spiritual identity! You can do that by studying His Word and seeing what HE says about who you are and then mirroring that instead of other people.

I am now much better at knowing who I am in Christ! Yes, I sometimes still struggle with it but I know where to go when that happens!

7 Bible Verses About Finding Your Identity

Colossians 1:22 - Holy and blameless

"But now He has reconciled you in Messiah’s physical body through death, in order to present you holy, spotless and blameless in His eyes—" TLV

Colossians 2:10 - Complete

"and in Him you have been filled to fullness. He is the head over every ruler and authority." TLV

1 Corinthians 2:16 - Possessing the mind of Christ

“who has known the mind of Adonai,  that he will instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Messiah." TLV

Romans 5:17 - Reigning in life

"For if, because of the offense of one man, death ruled through that one man; how much more will those receiving the overflowing grace, that is, the gift of being considered righteous, rule in life through the one man Yeshua the Messiah!" CJB

Mark 16:17-18 - Possessing the power of the Holy Spirit

"And these signs will accompany those who do trust: in my name they will drive out demons, speak with new tongues, not be injured if they handle snakes or drink poison, and heal the sick by laying hands on them." CJB

Colossians 3:10 - Renewed

"...and have put on the new self that is being renewed in knowledge, according to the image of the One who created him." TLV

Jeremiah 1:5 - Formed, known, set apart

Note: God was speaking specifically to Jeremiah in this verse. Now while He was speaking directly to someone here and not to all people in general, it does however demonstrate God's omnipotence and omniscience and that God too sees us like He saw Jeremiah, even before we are formed, and has a plan for each of our lives before we are born.

"Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, and before you were born, I set you apart— I appointed you prophet to the nations.”" TLV
Losing your identity doesn't have to a life sentence! You CAN find who you truly are in Christ and live authentically you! Click To Tweet

Knowing Who I Am Christ -So Who Does God Say I Am?

Have you had experiences with losing your identity in the past and knowing who you are in Christ? Comment below if you’d like and share how God helped you find who you are in Him!

And be sure to grab your FREE SOAP Bible Study Workbook below as my gift to you!

CJB – Taken from the Complete Jewish Bible by David H. Stern. Copyright © 1998. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Messianic Jewish Publishers, 6120 Day Long Lane, Clarksville, MD 21029. www.messianicjewish.net.

Tree of Life (TLV) – Scripture taken from the Holy Scriptures, Tree of Life Version*. Copyright © 2014,2016 by the Tree of Life Bible Society.  Used by permission of the Tree of Life Bible Society.

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34 Comments

  1. I wish I had know Christ in my youth. I struggled so much with my identity and tried so hard to fit in to what other people thought I should be. Now that I am saved, I feel so sad for my younger self and all that she missed out on.

  2. Our identity is such a fragile thing as a child, and I think the one most surprising thing to me is how much a broken identity wreaks havoc in our adult life in so many ways and for so many others. It has been my constant endeavor also, to really find, cherish and stand in my identity in Christ. Your story is one worth sharing and one filled with hope, Diane!

  3. Growing up in Alabama, it’s so interesting to read of your feelings towards moving as a child. In my mind back then, all of New York was only NYC. 🙂 But obviously not. ha. Thanks for encouraging us to root our identity in Christ, not in where we’re from or who we’re friends with, etc.

  4. Diane, wow a whirlwind you’ve been on — yet, thanks to God you’re faithful. It’s amazing what we can learn when we look back and connect the dots. I’m grateful that God cares about our hurts and has a way of weaving them together for our good.
    Blessings to you!
    Marva | SunSparkleShine

    1. Thank you Marva! You’re so right! It’s an amazing thing to look back and see how God used those things!!

      1. It is only because my identity is rooted in Christ and what he says about me that I am able to move past the dysfunction of my life in my family of origin to create new memories in my new life. Knowing whose we are is a total game changer.

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