Over on the Reinventure Me podcast today my co-host, Armin Assadi, and I discuss how change affects identity and why it’s important to think of identity as an integration of our various roles.
It’s easy to describe ourselves by a role. I’m a consultant, or sales person, or homeschooler. We even gain satisfaction from knowing we do that role really, really well. But is that who we are?
We’ve all likely experienced times when we’ve been overly preoccupied with our occupations. We received immense enjoyment from our work or the social or financial recognition we craved, so we gave even more of ourselves to it. Eventually we burned out or experienced a job loss that left us wondering who we really are. Someone might even have reminded us that we are meant to be human beings, not human doings. That’s cute, but is it really correct? Is it biblically correct?
In this episode, How change affects identity, I make the point that we are to be integrated in our being and doing. The expression of our work is a spiritual endeavor, under the commission of God as His children. From the very beginning, He brought us into being to do. This integration is beautifully captured in Acts 13:22 when God said of David:
“I have found David, a man after my own heart – he will do everything I want him to do.”
Likewise, we are to be integrated in the pursuit of God’s heart and the willingness to do whatever He asks of us. That’s the original meaning of vocation; vocātiō, the Latin word for a call or summons. If one has a call, there must be a Caller. And pouring ourselves into both the Caller and the calling is who we are to be and what we are to do.
Do you agree with this idea of an integrated identity?