Understand Our Spiritual Identity
…behold, thou art my son
~ Moses 1:4 ~
We know we are sons and daughters of God, with the potential to become like Him as described in His plan of happiness. We know this potential is achieved through our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and through obedience to the eternal laws and principles embedded in His gospel. We also know that Satan is totally dedicated to thwarting and derailing this marvelous plan-of-happiness knowledge and process. We know that one of his primary tools is to entice us to forget who we really are—to fail to realize or to forget our divine potential. This is the cruelest form of identity theft.
~ Elder Robert C. Oaks: April 2008 General Conference Your Divine Heritage ~
In Word: Have you ever considered who you are? An employer may ask you to share who you are as a prospective candidate. Online profiles ask for a brief biography of you. Meeting someone new affords opportunity to share who we are. Everything we do in life is tied to some form of our personal identity. In some cases, it is answering demographic questions of our own personal heritage. Race, ethnicity, religious beliefs, political party affiliation, and a host of other identifiers. What about spiritual identity? Who are we in a spiritual sense? Specifically, who are you from a spiritual perspective?
Our personal identity is important to us. It is how we define ourselves within the cultural context of society. We are either proud of who we are; or are ashamed of what we are and who we may have become. Either way, our personal identity helps us identify and define our sense of reality. What about spiritual identity – how does it shape our understanding of who we are in the social and cultural context of society?
Trust begins with understanding who we are in relationship to others. In our relationship with our Heavenly Father, we come to know the absolute reality of our own divine nature and heritage. We are created in the image and likeness of our Heavenly Father (see Genesis 1:26-27). As we come to understand our divine heritage, the Holy Spirit works in and through us to become more like Christ. Our trust in God also includes understanding that we are in the similitude and likeness of His only Begotten Son – Jesus Christ (See Moses 1:6). And there is a real, deep, personal connection with God when we come to understand our divine heritage.
This gives each one of us hope and a blessed desire to come unto Christ, to follow and worship God, and to strive toward walking in the will of Our Heavenly Father. Through our personal study of the scriptures, we come to understand the pure teaching that we are of Heavenly heritage, we have a divine purpose in this life, and we have a divine destiny awaiting us. Only if we come to the understanding that our spiritual identity motivates us to embrace true fellowship with our Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and others around us.
In Deed: Elder Robert C. Oakes mentions how we are vulnerable to exploitation and that this may be costly. Not the theft of our temporal identity but the theft that occurs when it significantly impacts our spiritual identity. Oaks mentions that one of the ways we experience spiritual identity theft is when we come to doubt who we are in Christ. This undermines our faith and our confidence we may have. When we doubt, entertain thoughts that question our spiritual identity in Christ, we begin to lose sight and focus. We stop listening to the guiding still small voice of the spirit. And become more susceptible to fall into various temptations that compromise our values and standards. As we feast upon the scriptures, we will find how men of faith have fallen prey to spiritual identity theft. How they wrestled with doubt. Let us learn from them and their example in overcome spiritual identity theft.
Take a Moment and Ponder: As you continue to study and search the scriptures, seeking after personal revelation from our Heavenly Father, reflect upon the following questions:
- Have I drifted from my relationship with Heavenly Father?
- How have I succumbed to spiritual identity theft?
- What does the scriptures reveal to me about my own spiritual identity?
- How does understanding my spiritual identity increase my faith and relationship with God, Jesus Christ, and those around me?
Pray with contrition and sincerity for our Heavenly Father to draw you closer to Him. Walk the path of repentance and seek forgiveness of any wrongdoing by turning away from sin. Be intent, committed, and motivated to seek God daily, cultivating a healthy and authentic relationship with him for ongoing personal revelation. Always seek opportunities to be of service toward others.
Purchase Volume 1 – Feast Upon the Scriptures Devotional
Feast Upon the Scriptures challenge us to read, ponder, and study the Old Testament. This devotional is the first volume and follows the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Come Follow Me Curriculum for 2022. These daily devotions challenge us to read the scriptures. Meditate upon them and apply the spiritual truths and insights into our daily lives. The power of scripture study brings encouragement, lifts our spirits, comforts us, guides us, chides us, builds us up, provides hope, and brings us closer to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Therefore, the month of January – these devotions focus our attention on God’s plan and purpose, our divine heritage, our sense of purpose and meaning, our identity, and our eternal destiny within the scope of God’s plan of salvation. From the creation to the Patriarch Enoch the reader will discover gems of doctrinal truth, spiritual application, and thoughtful questions to ponder.
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