What do you think of yourself? How do you define yourself? How are you defined? We are all defined, and we define others. He’s my accountant, she’s my doctor, he’s that guy that always yells at the neighbors. We all do it. But I want to say to you that when you define yourself, you may just be limiting who you are.
I do the same thing most people do. When I am asked to tell about myself, usually the first thing I tell is my occupation. That is how we usually define ourselves. A few years ago, I had gotten very sick and missed many weeks of work. I was very upset that I might not be able to go back to my job. I defined myself by my work. I did not stop to think that I had value beyond my work. I prayed for strength and patience. But then I realized that I am much more than my job. I am: a son of God, a disciple, a father, a son, a brother, an uncle, a friend, a writer, a reader, a student of life, a student of the Bible, a lover, a man. There were so many ways to define myself. This helped me look at the future more positively. Even if I could not return to my occupation, I would find something else to do.
Some people define themselves by their possessions. They are imprisoned by their quest to impress people they don’t even know. They always worry about what someone might think about them. What a terrible burden to have. How can you please people you don’t even know? How do you even know what will please them?
You have very little impact on how other people define you. You are in complete control in how you define yourself. Give yourself credit for the talents and gifts that you have. Cut yourself some slack for the failings you have and the mistakes you might have made. Think about who you are to others and let all those things define you. Concentrating on just one area can limit your potential. Now that you are thinking about all your relationships with others and all your talents and gifts, how do you define yourself?