Mistaken Identity

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Welcome readers of my Proverbs 31 devotion today called Mistaken Identity. If you haven’t read it yet, catch up with the rest of us by clicking here.

As promised, here is an interview with my good friend and ministry partner at Proverbs 31 Renee Swope on the topic of knowing who {and whose!} we are. And she is offering a generous giveaway too!

Karen: Renee, have you ever suffered from “mistaken identity” spiritually?

Renee: Yes, I lived with a mistaken identity for over 25 years.  And sometimes it still happens. Slowly, I’ll slip into a place of believing my identity is based on what I do or what I have or what others think of me. 

Karen: How do you know when it’s happening and what do you do to prevent it? 

I know it’s happening when I start to feel empty. I’ll start doubting my worth or feeling uncertain in my roles or in my purpose as a woman, mom, wife, friend, daughter… you name it. That sense of not being satisfied and feeling lost inside my own thoughts – that is how I know.  I’d love to share a short video with your readers today based on something I wrote about in my book, A Confident Heart. In it I share a powerful way I have learned to identify my lost identity, fill my emptiness and let Jesus help me “log out” of the lies and “login” to His promises.

Click the arrow below to watch Renee’s short but very powerful message.

{If you’re reading this via email, click here to return to my blog to watch Renee’s short message and enter to win A Confident Heart Book & Gift Bundle}

Download Renee’s “Message Notes” in a PDF format here or in a MSWord doc here, if you’d like to.

Renee Swope is a national speaker and author of the best-selling book, A Confident Heart,. She co-hosts Proverbs 31 Ministries’ radio show with Lysa TerKeurst and serves part-time as Executive Director of Radio & Social Media. But her favorite titles are wife to J.J and mom to her Joshua (18),  Andrew (15) and her 4 yr old  Aster, who they adopted from Ethiopia. Connect with Renee on Twitter @reneeswope, www.facebook.com/renee.swope and www.ReneeSwope.com

ENTER TO WIN: Renee is giving away 3 Confident Heart bundles that include a copy of her best-selling book, A Confident Heart, her new DVD series {coming Sept 2013} and her upcoming 60-day devotional {coming Nov 2013} .

Click “comments” below and share your thoughts about Renee’s video message or my devotion, and one thing you can apply to help you live in your true identity as a woman – and as a child of God!

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  1. Loved this message. As a newly revived Christian, it is still so easy to slip back in to old and negative ways of thinking. But having a short phrase or thought that brings you right back to center (God) is a blessing!

  2. Renee’s illustration was so powerful to me when I saw it last year. I needed the reminder again today. I’ve been looking to things of this world to fill me up (mainly relationships) and when they’ve disappointed me, I’ve gotten discouraged. I need to remember that God designed me to have Him fill me up so my spaces aren’t empty. Thanks so much for that reminder!

  3. Renee thank you for the beautiful message! I have thought about this many times and had difficulty putting it into words. Your visual and discussion made it so simple! All I truly need is to let go and let God fill me! Our pastor’s message this morning was about giving our whole heart to Jesus! God wants us to open up and let him come in and fill those empty spaces. As I continue the journey I realize that in the past 15 years or so I have been moving in this direction and you just provided confirmation! Thank You and God Bless!

  4. Hi Renee! The message in your video really encouraged me :). When I was younger I had confidence; but this confidence was in worldy things like achievement and appearance. I realize now that because of this I was looking for love in the wrong places, like you said in your video. In the past year, God has really been molding me into His image. However, I have really been struggling with the concept of identity in the last 6 months. As a result, I have been mentally saying and doing all kind of unhealthy things to myself. I like that you explained how to seek the Lord involving identity so that one can open the doors to being filled with God’s love and assurance! That is something I definately need right now. I would love to win a copy of confident heart bundle :). Not only would it be a blessing to me, but to several other ladies around me who are struggling with their identities. Thanks and God bless!

  5. My word study of ta’avah showed me that the longing of my heart is the same as Eve’s in the garden. It also showed me that a longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul (Prov. 13:19) and the tree of life (Prov.13:12). Glad to know I am not alone in feeling empty.

    Your lesson on filling the empty vessel was like a visit from a dear sister who shared a similar story a few Christmases ago.

  6. I felt that the mistaken identity devotion was written for me. I struggle with knowing who I am now that I have graduated from college. I am no longer a student, so who am I. I am reminded that what will never change is my identity as the beloved daughter of God, who loves me for me, despite my flaws.

  7. I really love your quote to look to “the GIver, rather than the gifts.” It is a reminder to me to ruthlessly examine my life and prioritize, putting God first. I’d love that to become a natural thing, as I find myself wrapped up even in “god stuff” that I often miss HIM. I look forward to your book!

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  9. My confidence tends to be low in two areas 1. Being a wife. 2. Being a mom. Other areas do tend to popup but the two mentioned are hard for me. I constantly must believe God is using me as a mom and wife to better myself and family. Satan tries to say I am a failure if I ever mess up & sin. I need to learn to run to God & let HIM fill me with HIS thoughts and infuse me with confidence that in HIM ,through HIM and b/c of HIS work on the cross I am His child and a great mom & wife b/c I am HIS child-a child of the KING !

  10. This is so incredibly important and if more of us could grasp this truth about who we really are in Christ just think of how much more God could use us to reach others. I wasted so many years as a Christian trying to be what I thought everyone else thought I should be. At a very hard time in my life I made some bad choices & went into a deep dark pit. It took going through that & then God in his grace & mercy bringing me out of it (hard work on my part, too) to bring me to a place where I’m finally catching on to who I really am as God’s child. It’s a beautiful thing!

  11. I truly needed to hear this message. This book is now on the list of must read. As a new Christian and a single mother I struggle every day to remember who I am in Christ and to look to Him to fill my heart as only He can. Thank you for this message.

  12. I struggle sometimes with my identity. I am so much better then I was before. I have to stay in the word and remind myself daily who I am in Christ. I have had to work hard at developing what my husband calls a “thick skin” so I don’t take things personally when people say or do things that affect me negatively. Now I know that when someone does something that harms me because I am doing what I believe GOD wants me to do I just remember they are not doing it to me but to Christ because God created me in HIS image.

  13. I am burying myself in His word desperately seeking His will. I am starting to feel a peace about where I am in life but I want to know His will and to discern His leading. Thank You for your help and God bless!

  14. God has been working on my identity lately. I’m still in a stage of growth where there is more pain than progress; but I KNOW He is working.

  15. Sometimes I feel like I’m 13 again, just wanting a best friend to spend time with and giggle with. But as I’ve focused on my relationship with Christ this summer, I can see that my jar is emptying little by little of people and thing needs, as it is filled with my Father’s love! That’s so refreshing and encouraging! Living water!

  16. This is a topic that I still struggle with off and on. so good to be reminded of these truths. There is a big need for woman to hear your encouraging words and find their true identity in God.

  17. I too struggle with confidence. My brain knows that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me but my heart doesn’t alwas feel it. I am going to start taking all the things I go to to fill my heart and put them where they belong. Just like the toys in the jar. I liked how Renee said we are to put them in places of priority, not pre-eminence. I am going to make room for God in my life because He wants that of me!

  18. I suffer from Complex PTSD from years of abuse and a hostage situation while working in EMS. I struggle with letting go and knowing who I am now, I struggle with fear, intimidation, abandonment issues, anger issues, severe anxiety and so on. The trouble is, everyone looks at me being a “Preacher’s Wife” and thinks that I’m wrong for going through this. I would love to be able to just let it go but, it haunts me. I do all the bible studies I can get my hands on. I’m reading a chronological through the Bible plan right now. I would love to receive this bundle. I would be so grateful! Thank you for the opportunity.

  19. Hi! I often struggle with my identity as a daughter of God. I read about friends who are making everything from scratch from food to cleaning products, grow everything in their backyard, cloth diapers, homeade gifts and clothes etc and say this is what a Proverbs 31 woman looks like and I get overwhelmed that I am not enough. I have trouble focusing on what truly makes me a fruitful child of God.I cannot wait to start your devotional!

  20. Identity is like a chameleon constantly daily as a deaf person, as a daughter, as a sister, as an aunt, as a friend, as a wife, etc. But throughout all the changes, my heart identity remains the same- steadfast and obedience in God. Though it is always a struggle because I tend to worry a lot, I tend to nitpick on small details, I tend to like to be in control…yet, God shows me His ways are way much better than mine. It is such a big relief to know that God still loves me!

  21. Your book A confident heart has lead me to my yet unpublished book an undivided heart as a single mother who has never been married … I believed our FATHER has a purpose for the growing statistics and I would just love the bundle to use to inspire many more. Oh and it was an honor to hear you speak …. Who knew when I stumbled across your book a few winters ago … YES and Amen to the one who knows all things! Thank YOU!

  22. I, too, struggle with self concept and my identity, who I am….God has got the answers….scripture gives us the truths we need to hear….why is it so hard to believe them? Satan, go away!!!! Your mental torture is SO hard on us……the Confident Heart study is so exciting……Thanks, Reneee…..Let go and let God, right?

  23. I struggle with confidence and trust, dealing with hurt from past relationships. I am excited for a study and DVD to go with the book.

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