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God's Call to "Be Yourself"

You’ve probably heard the advice people sometimes give to “be yourself.” It’s commonly given if someone is going in for a job interview, a first date, or something else they’re fretting about.
Interestingly, God instructs Christians to do the same thing. “Be yourselves.”

In 1 Peter 2:9-11, he leads Peter to write, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light…Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.

For those of us who are Christians, God has given us a new identity. We are, collectively, a holy people. And because we’re a holy people, we’re called to live a holy life. But, so often, what do we do? We imitate what we see around us instead of being who we are and living out our true identity. It’s like we have spiritual amnesia. We’ve forgotten who we are.

Kind of like if you saw someone who’s incredibly wealthy—like Mark Zuckerberg for instance—walking around the streets with a confused look on his face and begging people for money. That would be highly unusual, right? You might conclude that Mark Zuckerberg has forgotten who he is. He’s forgotten that he’s the majority owner of an outrageously successful company called Facebook and has billions of dollars to his name. And yet, so often, we forget our identity as Christians. We fall into worldly patterns of living that are out of line with who we really are.

The call for Christians to walk in holiness isn’t a call for us to be something we’re not. It’s a call to live out our true identity. God’s simply telling us to be ourselves.

As Christians, we’re members of a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, and a people for God’s own possession. Now let’s live out our true identity in Christ.