Relationships: Identity in Christ

I remember meeting my wife for the first time. We were both dating other people and, I found out later, were fairly intent on marrying those people. As I walked away from meeting her, I said to myself, “If it doesn’t work out with this girl I’m dating, I’d like to marry a girl like her.” Little did I know it would be two-and-a-half years later before we even started dating. During those two-and-a-half years, I was desperately single. I went on 5 dates the entire time with 3 different girls. I longed for a relationship but I never could get past the second date.

Throughout high school and college, my identity was the person I was dating. I became so enamored with the relationship that when we broke up, I was devastated. The sky was falling; my world was falling apart. In one fell swoop, my identity was gone. Again. I had spent so much energy on the relationship that when it ended, I was exhausted and had nothing to show for my effort.

Our hearts and lives are wired for relationship. We are created and meant for community and fellowship. God made this evident when He saw Adam in the Garden of Eden. He said, “It is not good for man to be alone.” (Genesis 2:18) Being alone for an extended period of time is not healthy. We must have community.

Here’s the problem. For most people, the solution for being alone is to find a boyfriend or girlfriend, date for a little while and get married. They buy into the idea that if they get married, they’ll never be alone. Their lives will finally be complete and whole. In our hopelessly romantic culture, we believe the movies and the sitcoms. If I could just get a date, be in a committed relationship or even worse, if I could connect sexually with someone, I’ll be fulfilled. People chase fulfillment and wholeness in another person.

Read this carefully, two broken people will never complete each other. Read it again. If we acknowledge that we are sinners who’ve made poor choices in life and we are desperately in need of a Savior, we are acknowledging that we are broken. Christ is the only thing that will make us whole. He is the only person who can take the pieces of my life and make something beautiful.

I came across a verse in my singleness that has stuck with me now for over 10 years. In Psalm 73, Asaph writes some incredible words on the sufficiency of Christ. In his declaration, he acknowledges his brokenness and fleeting spirit. In the next breath, however, is one of the most powerful statements in all of Scripture. He says this,

Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth I desire besides you. My heart and my flesh may fail but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. For behold, those who are far from you shall perish; you put an end to everyone who is unfaithful to you. But as for me it is good to be near God; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works. (Psalm 73:25-28)

Find your hope in the God who will stand strong when your heart and flesh fail. Be intent on reveling in the presence and nearness of God. God does not play favorites so whether you’re single or married He openly welcomes us into His presence through Christ. Allow God to heal your brokenness and look to Him for hope and peace. Another person will never complete you or fix what’s broken. Christ alone is all-sufficient! Rest in Him and find your life in Him alone.


This entry was published on January 27, 2013 at 9:36 pm. It’s filed under experiences, family, God, grace, learning, marriage, Scripture, testimony, theology and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

6 thoughts on “Relationships: Identity in Christ

  1. Good words here. I think, too, we must remember that we were created to live horizontally, too. The concept of, “it’s just me and God, and we don’t need nobody else,” is far from what God intends for our lives. As you said, we’re relational beings. We’re created to live in community with one another and to share the load of life. While Christ is our only hope, he gives us support and demonstrates His goodness through the actions of others– the Church, primarily.

  2. I really needed to read this tonight. Thank you.

  3. I always had that verse posted somewhere in my room in college. Love it! Thanks for your wisdom and teaching Stan!

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