By: Rachel Munsey Jackson
When I was born, my parents knew within hours that I was very ill. My kidneys were covered with cysts and I was in kidney failure at birth! Fast forward seven years and I could barely walk through the grocery store. Thankfully, I wasn’t really aware of how sick I was because I had always lived with the symptoms. My dad donated me a kidney when I was seven years old. That was the time I realized just how sick I had been my whole life because I felt better for the first time. I was placed on a laundry list of medicines that I still take and will take forever. Naturally, my health became a large part of my identity.
It’s an interesting study in humanity to observe in what earthly things people find their identity – hobbies, politics, fandoms, and even chronic illnesses to name a few. My own identity is shaped by earthly things too. I am a cat lady, kidney transplant recipient, and most recently, hopeful adoptive mama. While reflecting on my childhood experience for this blog post, I asked myself how I handled chronic illness as a child. The main thing that came to mind was that my identity was found in Christ. There were other things too. I was a little sister and a singer. I cherished my baby dolls. But had I lost my family, stopped singing, or ditched dolls for monster trucks, I would have still found my identity in Jesus Christ because I knew He loves me.
Matthew 6:33 says, “…seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” In life, nothing is guaranteed except for Christ. Life will throw you curveballs, even when you are young. Earthly things can be a part of your identity, but don’t let those things be your identity. Our likes are fleeting, hobbies come and go, and even relationships and health aren’t forever. The only thing that is eternal is Christ. Seek first His Kingdom. Plant your identity firmly in Him and face those curveballs life throws.