About the Identity Series

Who are you? Why are you here? What purpose do you serve?
We have been focusing on what the book of Romans says about who we are and what Christ did for us.
We hope our stories and thoughts on God’s Word will help you see that our salvation is never earned.
It is only by grace that we find life! Our prayer is that you see God in a new light through this series.

Week 1

Day 1: From Eden

Thousands of years ago, a man named Paul sat down and penned a letter to a group of Christians in Rome. Although we are separated from this group by time, our similarities are undeniable.

Day 2: Praying Hands

About five years ago my “Uncle Mark” (a close family friend) asked me to do a sketch of praying hands for him. My natural response was wondering what he wanted it for.

Day 3: Unashamed

It was my freshman year in college at a state university. I didn’t see how missions applied to me, someone who did not feel called to be a missionary and was afraid of talking to new people.

​Day 4: Inherited Inclination

When I was in middle school, I was in love with the world and all it had to offer. I loved the pleasures it gave, the affirmation it brought, and the carefree lifestyle it promoted.

Day 5: One True King

Do you remember Beyoncé’s Grammy Performance in 2017? She performed while pregnant, She wore a gold-beaded dress and crown with a solid gold necklace and earrings and she looked #flawless.

Day 6: To Deliver Over

When we look out at the world around us, it quickly becomes clear that things are not as they should be.

Day 7: A Meditation

St. Augustine writes “Our hearts are restless till they find their rest in you.” What things have you been seeking after that has left you restless?

Week 2

Day 8: Replace the Judgement

It was a rare sunny spring season on the small Greek island in the Aegean Sea, and I was there serving at a refugee camp. Daily life for me consisted of handing out food, water, and other necessities, building tents, organizing housing for new arrivals, and taking a census of the camp for the supplies list.

Day 9: Pray for Faith

Salvation cannot be earned. Salvation cannot be earned. These are words I had caught myself whispering more times than I could count.

Day 10: Faith over Knowledge

It was the prettiest sight I had ever seen. Utterly extravagant and breathtaking; it was impossible not to stop and stare. The sunset that evening was mesmerizing.

Day 11: Stand Out

I can’t remember a time in my life where I didn’t know about God. I grew up in the Church, and by the age of four, I decided I wanted to follow Jesus. Most of my life, I have considered myself a Christian.

Day 12: Heart Check

Everyone in my family has curly hair. It’s a mark binding us together as a family. My father’s hair has fallen out, my mother’s is straightened more than not, and my brother keeps his too short to tell.

Day 13: God is so Faithful

The preacher stood on the camp chapel stage. His voice was raised, not with anger, but with passion and urgency. With slivers of tears in the corner of his eyes, he spoke, advocating for young high school students to fully devote their lives to God.

Day 14: A Meditation

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Week 3

Day 15: We are Nothing

Social media has made keeping in touch with old friends incredibly easy. With one tap or click, I can see how a friend from high school or college is doing.

Day 16: Gift of Grace

I was once on a train with a man and we got to talking about religion. He told me a bit about his upbringing. I asked him, “Do you believe in an afterlife?” He answered, “I’m not sure, but I hope I can one day be good enough to get in- if there is one.”

Day 17: Good Works vs. Faith

Growing up, I didn’t watch a lot of sports; I was always more of a bookworm. But once in a while, I would catch a basketball game or football game with friends. Inevitably, the conversation would drift to who was the G.O.A.T. – the greatest of all time.

Day 18: God isn’t Transactional

Home buying can be a difficult and intimidating process. With all the different loan options and grant programs available to homebuyers, it can sometimes feel overwhelming.

Day 19: Sins Forgiven

For my birthday last year, a friend of mine was nice enough to give me a card with a coupon to a nice restaurant. Later, when I opened the card, I saw that the coupon was for double what we would normally spend!

Day 20: Our New Identity

During certain times of the year, I travel around the country for work. The last time I was traveling, I was waiting for my flight to start boarding.

Day 21: A Meditation

Doubt exists in more than just the mind. When we fulfill any desire outside of the Lord we are functionally doubting that He is our ultimate Good.

Week 4

Day 22: Live Out Your Faith

When I was 6 years old, God put it in my heart to go to Africa. All throughout my childhood, I talked about how much I wanted to go to Africa.

Day 23: Hope Grows in the Unknown

I go to church with a woman named Kelly. She has cystic fibrosis, which she was diagnosed with when she was ten. Cystic fibrosis is a life-threatening disorder that affects your lungs and digestive system.

Day 24: Persevere in the Darkness

When I was 14 years old, I was diagnosed with depression and chronic fatigue. It has affected me in different ways and at different intensities over the years, but I have known mental illness as a companion for almost half of my life.

Day 25: Beauty of the Gospel

I never had the chance to meet my great-uncle, because he died in the Vietnam War. Uncle Mike was an amazing guy. He cared about others and wanted to make sure they were taken care of.

Day 26: Hope from Depravity

Liz Joice was told she could probably never have children due to complications from cancer treatments. When she saw that multiple pregnancy tests said she was pregnant, she was amazed and elated.

Day 27: Despair to Hope

My youngest sister is almost 17 years younger than me. I’ve gotten to see her grow through her toddler years, and it has been a huge joy to be able to be part of her different development stages.

Day 28: A Meditation

Due to the unfathomable sacrifice of our selfless savior, we have an 𝐞𝐭𝐞𝐫𝐧𝐚𝐥 𝐡𝐨𝐩𝐞 to look forward to.⁣ We don’t have to face death, because our Savior already did it for us.

Week 5

Day 29: Our Real Freedom

In the story, Les Misérables by Victor Hugo, the protagonist Jean Valjean is struggling to adjust to who he has become in the eyes of others. After serving a nineteen-year prison sentence for petty theft, he becomes hardened and bitter.

Day 30: It Always Starts Out Small

What started as a series of small invasions became an international conflict. One man’s cunning strategy nearly toppled the entire world. Who was this man? Adolf Hitler.

Day 31: What Are You Dedicated To?

When he was only seven years old, Michael Phelps had already devoted his life to swimming. By age eight, he was dreaming of the Olympics, and, by age eleven, Phelps’ potential caught the eye of an experienced coach who invested in him.

Day 32: Serve What is Good

Abby Johnson used to hear the raging voices of angry protestors outside of her workplace where she was a director. Once a man holding a sign called her a “baby killer.”

Day 33: Death of Self

One of my favorite stories as a child was C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Four siblings discover the wintry land of Narnia when they enter an old wardrobe.

Day 34: Our Inner Rebellion

Read: Romans 7:7-12 I didn’t want it. Until I wasn’t allowed to have it. Then, I had to have it.…

Day 35: A Meditation

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Week 6

Day 36: The Dirt in Your Life

One of the most embarrassing feelings is getting home at the end of a long day, looking in the mirror, and finding something stuck in your teeth. Or, if you’re me, a dry salsa spot on your face.

Day 37: Constant Tug of War

Have you ever come together with a team to play tug of war? If you have, you know that the group that pulls the other team into the mud at the end is the winner. Sometimes the Christian life can feel like this, except it’s just you pulling at both ends.

Day 38: Our Death Sentence

In Article II, Section 2, Clause 1 of the United States Constitution, it states that the President has the authority to grant pardons. “He (the President) shall have the power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment.”

Day 39: Failure Isn’t the End

In the tale of Pinocchio, we also learn the story of Geppetto, a poor woodworker who wishes to have a son. He makes a wooden marionette of a boy, and with a magic wish, it comes to life. Immediately, Geppetto treats the living puppet like his own son.

Day 40: Life Wins

Whenever we read the news, we may start to feel overwhelmed, and maybe even a little hopeless. We ignore the realities of this world because it’s too hard, sad, or painful.

Day 41: Hope Lies in Prayer

Since I was 9 years old, I have been faithful in praying. I’ve prayed more times than I can count! I have thought a lot about what it means to pray, what effect it has on my everyday life.

Day 42: A Meditation

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Week 7

Day 43: Do You Question God’s Love?

Why do questions make us think? There are probably multiple ways we could answer that question, and that’s the point. Questions cause us to search through all the possible answers in order to find the right one that will put a period in the place of the question mark.

Day 44: Loving the Lost

In 1955, Jim Elliot and four of his friends made contact with a violent tribe in Ecuador, called the Huaorani. Even though the Huaorani were known to be violent, Jim Elliot and his friends wanted nothing more than to bring the Gospel to them.

Day 45: God’s Love is Unconditional

When I was born, I did not have to work for my parents’ love. I did not have to do any magic tricks or accomplish any feats to earn their love. Instead, my parents loved me purely because I was their child.

Day 46: Mercy Towards the Undeserving

One of the surprising places I have seen undeserved mercy displayed is in the Biblical Hebrew class for which I am the teacher’s assistant. My job is to check the quizzes completed by students and to give each one a grade.

Day 47: Who Gets Punished?

In high school, I was a part of the leadership team for the children’s ministry at my church. Every Wednesday night as the adults gathered to pray, I would be with the rambunctious children trying to help them have fun in a safe environment.

Day 48: It’s Not About the Color of Your Skin

My family adopted my little brother Frank last year. His biological family made significant poor life decisions that caused them to lose custody of their son.

Day 49: A Meditation

We all have things we wish we could change about ourselves. We want bigger muscles, whiter teeth, a slimmer waist, longer eyelashes, a better I.Q., the wishlist never ends.

Week 8

Day 50: Don’t Live For a Checklist

It is so easy to live life, just checking things off a list. I am an organized person, I am one of those people who instantly updates my planner whenever I have new projects or there are changes to my deadlines.

Day 51: What is Your Life Based On?

There was a time in my life when I quit believing in God. Why? Well, there were so many bad things going on in my life, and I couldn’t understand why a good and faithful God would allow those things to happen.

Day 52: Stop Living in Fear

When I was 8 years old, my parents sat me down and shared the gospel to me. On that day, I accepted Jesus as my Savior. Even at that young age, I came face to face with my depravity and the reality of hell.

Day 53: How Will They Know?

For the majority of my life, my parents have been missionaries. I am from the Philippines, but my parents moved our family to another part of Southeast Asia where we lived for about 10 years.

Day 54: Redemption and Grace Thrive

My grandfather was an alcoholic and a heavy smoker. He died when my dad was 12 due to complications that came from substance abuse.

Day 55: Lawbreakers Find Grace

We are all sinners, and therefore we all sin. There’s no escape from that. Even our thoughts can sometimes be considered a sin. That’s something I struggle with often.

Day 56: A Meditation

Do you look at how “good” others are and try to “earn” and “work” your way through life?

Week 9

Day 57: Road to Repentance

I know a young man, Eric who had a son outside of marriage. Eric loved his son and the gift of fatherhood, but his relationship with his son’s mother, Tracy was bad. Very bad.

Day 58: Part of the Family

I have a close friend who is adopted. Her name is Sasha*. She has just one other sibling who wasn’t adopted. The fact that she was adopted and her sibling wasn’t has never affected their parent’s love for them.

Day 59: Undeserved Acceptance

During a presidential election, there is a tendency for every candidate to criticize the other, making sure that they come out the better option. Other than making promises, or putting their experiences on the table, they call their competitor out.

Day 60: Promises Get Fulfilled

I’m not the greatest at keeping promises. I don’t always follow through on my word when I tell people I’ll be there for them. I’m not purposefully trying to disappoint them, but sometimes, things get in the way of my best plans.

Day 61: Beyond Our Understanding

I’m sure you’ve asked yourself, at one time or another, “If God is good, why do bad things happen?” That question is central to the Old Testament story of Job.

Day 62: Work Together Or Not At All

We don’t live on an island; the world is made of communities. If these communities don’t work together, they crumble. And community is an important part of what it means to be a Christian.

Day 63: A Meditation

Do you tend to look at what people around you are doing and compare yourself to them? Are you focused on how many likes each photo on instagram gets?

Week 10

Day 64: Show Love in Action

Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. I was seventeen years old when I truly learned what forgiveness was.

Day 65: Forgiveness in Light of Evil

*PSA: Sensitive Content
It wasn’t too long ago when a “friend” raped me. This person didn’t just do it once, then feel remorse and change. Instead, this person got away with it the second time, and a third time, and then almost every single day for the next six months.

Day 66: Honor Leaders, Honor God

It is so easy to take your parents for granted. I remember when I used to have a journal where I would write about my crushes, my accomplishments, my hopes, and also my annoyance of my parents.

Day 67: Comparison Kills Love

I wish being content came easier than jealousy. But, that’s just not the case. My sister, Trisha, being the amazing person she is, has always been extremely gifted in many ways.

Day 68: It’s Not Our Job to Judge

We need to change our mindset when it comes to judging others. Everyone has their own opinions, beliefs, and preferences. We can’t hold anyone to our own personal views.

Day 69: Live by the Word

Having someone to keep you accountable is a great thing. It helps us get over bad habits, and it’s nice to have someone you can rely on when you are feeling weak.

Day 70: A Meditation

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Week 11

Day 71: What are Your Convictions?

By now, I think a lot of us have been able to figure out that Disney has fed us quite a few skewed messages. For example, wishing upon a star doesn’t make all of our wildest dreams come true, and real love typically doesn’t happen after only a week of knowing someone.

Day 72: Contents of Our Thoughts

Have you ever asked a child to summarize the main content of their favorite movie? It’s actually so humorous. I’ve recently watched a few YouTube videos where kids were asked to give a synopsis of famous films.

Day 73: The People Pleaser

In every respect of the word, I am a people-pleaser. I have a very hard time saying “no,” I always try to make others happy (even if that means sacrificing my own wants or desires), and I often put myself in harm’s way to protect someone else’s feelings.

Day 74: Welcome Each Other

When I stepped onto Moody Bible Institute’s campus my first semester, I was searching for a place to belong. Having done comedy improv in high school, I decided to audition for Moody’s improv team in hopes of finding my niche.

Day 75: Correcting Out of Love

Correction and I have never had a good rapport. I am unbearably obstinate when it comes to giving or receiving instruction.

Day 76: Evangelizing Correctly

Recently, I’ve been trying to share my faith in Christ with a student I tutor. The keyword is trying. Oftentimes in our friendship, I’ve struggled knowing how best to witness to her.

Day 77: A Meditation

The noise of our present struggles can sometimes drown out the soft whisper of God’s loving kindness. Take time today…

Week 12

Day 78: True Friends

Every time I see Carol, it’s the same reaction. She runs towards me with full speed, arms stretched out wide, screaming my name. I always have to prepare for a big embrace as her hugs usually bring me to the ground.

Day 79: Pray, Pray, Pray

My two close friends and I have a group chat. Every day, we send texts asking for prayer requests. I know I can always count on them to take the time and pray for me when I need it.

Day 80: Love Like God

When my fiance and I were dating, he went through the Marine Corps Boot Camp. He was gone for three months and the only way we had of communicating was through letters.

Day 81: Stop Listening to the Lies

When I was a little kid, my brother told me there were hyenas in the woods behind our house. I was terrified of hyenas, and therefore terrified of going outside.

Day 82: The Good and the Bad

My parents just got a new puppy. He is a sweet dog and for the most part, naturally behaves. Although he’s a good dog, he’s still just a puppy.

Day 83: Not Mine, But God’s

Steele Johnson is a professional swimmer. In 2016, He went to the Summer Olympics in Rio. There, he won the silver medal for men’s ten-meter synchronized platform diving competition.

Day 84: A Meditation

There are SO many things that seek to distort out identities but the truth is they are all powerless compared…