Living in Chicago while attending school at North Park University provided me with many exciting and fun-filled opportunities.
Ed Debevic's? Ate there.
Blue Men Group? Saw them live.
The NFL draft? Attended.
One of my favorite memories from living in Chicago was being able to spend quality time with my family that lived there. My Uncle Mike, Aunt Dani, and cousin Cruzer showed me the ins and outs of the city. I remember shopping with them one day and stumbled upon a moment that couldn't be described by words but required a photo to capture its significance. I pulled out my phone and snapped this shot:
Cruz was mesmerized by his reflection. Standing in front of the mirror, he was fascinated by what his reflection showed. Regardless of the inevitable suffering his life would bring, Cruzer was reflecting on his identity at that very moment. He stayed like this for a few minutes before we moved on to the next store.
I believe the question of identity is one of the most important questions we have to answer during our time on earth.
Who are you?
When you look in the mirror, what do you see?
Jesus asks His disciples this very question when traveling to Phillipi:
"Jesus and His disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way He asked them, 'Who do people say I am?' They replied, 'Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.' 'But what about you?' He asked. 'Who do you say I am?' Peter answered, 'You are the Messiah (Mark 8:27-29, NIV).”
The world is chasing after your identity. Every day we are battling the temptation to accept the identities the world offers us: failure, mistake, anxious, poor, ugly, not worth saving, unlovable, undesirable, a mess... You are not defined by your mistakes. You are not defined by the world. You are only defined by God.
God says you are loved (see John 3:16).
God says you are His (see 1 John 3:1).
God says you have a purpose (see Jeremiah 29:10-11). God says you are accepted (see Romans 15:7).
God says the old in you is gone and the new is come (see 2 Corinthians 5:17).
But best of all, God says you are His Child (see Galatians 3:26).
Next time you look in the mirror, hold on to the Truth that you are a child of the Highest. You are a son and a daughter of God. You are loved and desired by the King of Kings.