One of the main reasons for this blog is to share our story of how God has worked in us and led us to come to France. As we build up to Easter and reflect on what Christ has done, it is only natural to look back at one’s own life and the journey walked with Him. This is an extract from one of my prayer journals ten years ago. It provides some insight into my thinking at a time when I struggled with questions of identity, purpose and calling. I love looking back and comparing then and now.
The question which haunts us, drives us and defines us. The question whose answer can become our victory or our vice. “Who am I?”
At only twenty years old, who am I to answer this question? My turbulent journey through life has barely begun and yet there are those, three or four times my age, still losing themselves, a self yet to be found, in the ongoing, subconscious quest. Are we not all seekers? Are we not all lumps of clay, rough and undefined awaiting our chance, our moment to take our true shape and form? To no longer wonder what we will become, but rather to be.
“Who am I?” Perhaps the question runs so deep that I no longer know that I ask it, or maybe it’s only skin deep, surfacing through every interaction. Does my pride protect me? Does it hide me from the world or cure my need for praise? Every affirmation feeds my hunger yet leaves me empty. In the pit of my stomach I feel the silent scream for more, there must be more. “Who am I?”
How can I answer this question in the fore of my life? It seems that one can look back and comment on one’s life, but to truly define who a person was, we must be able to comment on all the facts. Do I have to wait for my life to be over before I know what I should at the beginning?
There it is again, the still small voice. When I hear it I never really hear it, yet it resounds through my very being. A silence so easy to silence, yet it speaks. I feel Him.
They say silence is golden, but maybe it is worth even more than that. The silent voice may be life itself. He spoke life into being and formed the heavens with His word, yet He crafted us by hand. Lovingly, crafted us by hand. “Who are you?”
These words echo through eternity, the significance unparalleled. No beginning and no end, untouched by time. Before time was, “I Am” and when time ends, “I Am”, unending.
Consider the cost of following Christ. Weigh it up. The price is your life and who can cheapen a life’s value? He who loses his life will gain it. The sinner’s prayer, so simple, so eternal. So many commit to a promise they don’t understand. Did I understand what I was getting myself into? How could I, I was only twelve years old at the time. Do I now fully understand the sacrifice of the cross? Each day brings new mercy, new grace. He floods me with love undeserved and washes me with His presence. My finite mind struggles to grasp Him.
Impossible to understand, to accept, yet He is. He is and He loves me, a flawed, fallible and finite sinner. My heart, already calloused by life is raw to His touch. I am still only a young man, a seeker in the service of the King. Watch Him mold me.
Christ died for me, paid my price and suffered my shame. I will never understand the full extent of what He did, so I give my life to Him. A life I should never have had. He says that he who loses his life will find it. This statement seems to contradict all I know, yet I trust Him. Perhaps the same applies to my identity. Maybe I’ve been looking in the wrong place. Maybe I should lose my life, my identity in the One. When I ask the question, “Who am I?”
He responds, “I Am.”
1. When I became we
2. Step on to the water
3. This little light of mine
4. Luc, I am your father
5. A light to our path
6. Next to a stranger
7. Empty cupboards and croissants
8. Musings after the monument
9. Baby steps
10. Through the window
12. Crossing the road
13. Who am I?
14. Sticks and stones
15. Lost and Found
16. A Fixed Point
17. Les Poux
18. Pain au chocolat
19. Notre Dame
20. The temple to all the gods
21. The Palace
22. Dead Emperor, living King