by Shannon Graessle - Oct 12 2017

Raise your hand if you’ve ever laid awake at night wrestling with questions of who you’ll become, what your life’s work will amount to, or maybe just what in the world you're supposed to do. As women living in western culture, I can’t imagine any one of us have not wondered about these things. From a very young age we’re told “You can be anything you want to be”, which is A LOT of things, guys.

As we set out on our discovery of what it would look like to live fully out of our God-given identity, we couldn’t help but come face to face with these questions of purpose again and again. How could you not? Purpose is intricately wrapped up in identity, especially in the Christian life, but so often we forget that purpose is a part of a bigger picture and we twist it into something we do instead of who we are— We were given life out of the purpose of the Gospel.

So we kept coming back to the privilege of stressing about “purpose”. We deeply take for granted how much freedom we have in even entertaining such a thought, and in this privilege, it is easy to look to women in other parts of the world and even some parts of our own country with pity. Thinking that because their culture is different and their roles are sometimes predetermined for them, that their purpose doesn’t sit at the same table as ours. They may not have the privilege of being told “You can be whatever you want to be”, but that will never steal away who they were created to be. 

You see, as a culture we’re obsessed with status and impact, there’s no denying it, and while influence may bring about good things, we forget to keep it in check and it often begins to eat away at our identity with works-based value. Slowly, how we view ourselves seeps into how we value others and we begin to question the value of their identity by holding up a measuring stick of what assets they add to our lives. What a slap in the face to grace. 

By not recognizing the importance of God-Given Identity in our own lives, we boil others down to “What can you do for me”— Don’t think this is you? Well let’s consider how we view other cultures— often with the thought “we know better” or “we have it together and you need me”, instead of equal image-bearers of God— someone who reveals more of God’s character to us. So while we are called to help our fellow brothers and sisters, let us never belittle their identity in our God. 

‘Cause here’s the thing, what we do is not who we are. It’s critical to make that distinction. Our identity is in Christ and NOT what we do. No matter where we were born, our identity in Christ is something that is universal. And THAT is one of the biggest stirrings of our hearts at The Bud Co. We want each and every child of God to know where their identity comes from and start to reframe how we talk about our global neighborhood through that lens. It’s something that breaks the barriers of separation and breaks the chains of “I’m better than you”. Our work, our background, our status does not define us. So…What a privilege it is, to be united in Christ.


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