Saturday, August 23, 2008


What do you do?
It's interesting to me that this is the question we ask in order to discover someone's identity. For some reason, the question "Who are you?" seems slightly odd, and would most likely be answered with a name (and a quizzical look).
What do you do?
The fact that this question is the marker for identity has nagged at me a bit since I became a mama. I could get up on my soapbox and drone on about how society underappreciates the role of motherhood (which I do believe is true) - but I won't. Not today.
I'd rather focus on the truth that has sunk into my skin during the past week in a way it never has before.
My identity is NOT what I do. Not that what I do isn't important or valuable. It is. But it's not eternal.
I am a child of the King. Period. I am His daughter, and I am precious to Him.
What I do is (or at least ought to be) an extension of who I am. A result. Because I am saved by His grace.
I always knew this was true. I knew that the most important part of my identity was in Christ. If you had asked me, I would have told you so.
But I never felt the need to believe it the way I have in the past months. Because there was always another society-preferred answer to give. I am a graduate student. I am an Assistant Hall Director on campus. I am an academic adviser.
"I am a stay-at-home-mom" gets such mixed reactions that I allowed myself to feel invalidated, even though I adore my job.
What I was missing is that no one can take away who I am in Christ.
So the world can judge. Ask me "what I do all day" and try to look polite when I explain the seemingly inconsequential tasks that fill my day.
But I love what I do.
And more importantly, I love who I am in Him.

2 thoughts:

Sarah Halter said...

I've often thought this too, especially after living in Africa where your primary identity is whose child you are. When people introduce themselves, others often ask, "Who is your father?" so they know who the person is.

One of the things I struggle with is finding my identity and self-worth in my skills and abilities - what I'm good at instead of whose I am.

Tiffany said...

Great post you have given me some things to think about!