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From: stevek
Date: Mon Oct 20 13:27:07 MST 2003 Subject: self identity

When we recently finished 1 Samuel I was disappointed to learn that we weren't going to continue on through the second book of Samuel because I find that it's a rich storehouse of material that hits right where we live. So I have continued on my own to study that book and came across an account in it that hits right at an issue a group of us were wrestling with last Saturday at Eric's house. That issue is where we go to form our identity. The lesson comes from 2 Samuel 9. David had already made a commitment to Johnathon to take care of his descendents/in those days that meant to not kill them when the change in rulers from the house of Saul to that of David occured. So in chapter 9 he is asking if there is anyone left in that line to whom he, David, could show kindness. The word 'kindness' in the old testament is a good analog to our new testament word 'grace.' Johnathon has one son left - Mephibosheth - who is identified as being crippled (go to chapter 4 and you'll see how the kid wound up that way.) In those times if you were crippled you were put away, out of sight as being an embarassment/burden to the family. In fact, that's what Johnathon's family did with the kid - put him out in a desolate place to live apart from the rest of the clan. They saw the brokenness in Mephibosheth. David didn't. He called for the kid, and despite the fact that he had done nothing to deserve it, King David seated him at his table. David saw him as God does - maybe broken, but because of the commitment he had made to the son of King Saul, David saw through that brokenness and restored him to a place of love and security. That's a picture of God's grace. We're broken, and undeserving, but when we commit ourselves to the Son of the King, God's grace falls on us and we are seated in his courts. It is God to whom we should turn for a picture of who we are - He sees us not as the world does/not as the Johnathon's family saw their broken brother/but as loved and valued children. The world judges and forms our identity based on the world's standards. As members of the family of Christ, we are no longer citizens of this world, and therefore are invited to the throne room of the Almighty to see ourselves as God does. That's the only identity we need concern ourselves with.

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