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The Great “I AM”

Updated: Jul 22, 2023

Read:

Exodus 3:14

God said to Moses, “ I AM WHO I AM.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘ I AM has sent me to you.’”


Reflect:

  1. Who is God?

  2. Who are you?

  3. What defines you as a person and your purpose in life?


Remember:


I recently had the privilege to be camp counselor to an amazing group of middle school girls. But as the week played out, what I observed broke my heart. There were hundreds of youth who were confused about their identity. We have been inundated for so long from media, our own families, friends, teachers and even, dare I say it... churches, with the lie that we can all make our own identity whatever we want it to be. I spent the whole week speaking God's truth to every girl I interacted with.


I have questioned my identity to an extreme that few will ever understand when I woke up from a two week long coma, after suffering a severe permanent Traumatic Brain Injury, the week before I was supposed to start college. I was sleeping on the van on my way home from a mission trip with my youth group, and I woke up two weeks later with no short-term or long-term memory. I had completely lost who I was; Who was I?


The only memory I woke up with was ingrained so deeply that it penetrated my very soul. It was my relationship with God through Jesus Christ. I'm told I woke up and the first thing I said was,


"Jesus was holding my right hand. He said it's not time for me to come home yet. He has more for me to do, but He promised that He will be with me every step of the way."


It doesn't sound like a lot but, through starting life at 17 years old all over again; years of surgeries and recovery; and learning to live with a disability for the rest of my life; the greatest thing about my identity I would learn is that He is all I need. In Him I am complete and in Him I have hope.


Our theme song for the week was based on an old hymn called, "New Name Written Down in Glory," originally written by C. Austin Miles. Charity Gayle recently put a new spin on it with a modern melody and added a bridge to the song that is a lot of fun to sing. The bridge is sort of a tongue twister and made a great way for us to remember where we find our identity (the weeks theme). The bridge goes like this,


"I am who I am because the I Am tells me who I am.

I am who I am because the I Am tells me who I am."


Try saying that three times fast! It repeats 8 times. We will not forget who we are now.


Who is the Great "I AM,' and who am I in light of who He is?


In Exodus God tells Moses to go and rescue His chosen people, the Israelites. They had been slaves in Egypt for 500 years and it was time for them to see their salvation. Moses asked God what he should tell the people if they ask what His name is. God told him:


"I AM WHO I AM."


God was declaring: He was, He is, and He will be. He has no beginning, no ending and has preeminence and power over all things. He is all sustaining, never changing, and the supreme Creator, Father, and LORD over all for always and forever. The Jewish people would know that this is the God of their fathers; Abraham, Issac, and Jacob. He was their purpose from the beginning, provision in the present, and promise for the future no matter what circumstances they faced. Now was the time, and He was sending Moses to bring them salvation from their bondage.


God is not only the God of the Jewish people, but He is God of all. He is our God, the one true God and just like He was the Great "I AM" (salvation) for the Israelites then, He is our Great "I AM," in whatever circumstances we face now. If we will trust in Him and surrender to His love over us, we can know His salvation and be free from our bondage to sin. He has had a plan from the beginning of time to rescue the Israelites from slavery, and for it to point to His plan to rescue us from ourselves and death. The Great "I AM,' is the author of our story and our identity is found in Him.


God knew we couldn't comprehend His greatness on our own, so He sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, to put on flesh and live with us, to love us, and save us. Colossians 1:15-20 sums up perfectly who Jesus Christ is and how our identity is held in Him:


He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.


Right there it says he is the perfect image of and filled with the fullness of God. He is fully God and fully man. We all are made through Him and for Him. We are reconciled (saved) by Him, and held together by Him. Our identity is found only in Him. He is our Great "I AM."


In Jesus, all the goodness of God fully dwells and in a relationship with Him we can know the way, the truth, and the life. As we grow to know Him more, we will know who we are and where we belong because of who He is. In our identity in Christ we will have a hope to hang onto.


How do we know the way, the truth, and the life and how does that give us our identity? I will talk more about that and my journey to find my new identity in next weeks post.


Read on to the next post: I Am The Way: "I'll Do it Your Way"






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