A man who has worked for the same company for 25 years suddenly finds himself out the door, due to downsizing. His self-identity has been tied up in his profession. Starting over at his age is a daunting prospect.
Long before he thought it would happen, a professional athlete’s record-setting career ends abruptly with a debilitating injury. Now that his glory days are over, the very thought of being a “has-been” is unbearable.
A woman whose chief role in life has been nurturing children must now adjust to the empty nest. What is she to do with herself now?
How will we respond?
If we haven’t already experienced it, likely we will. Being forced out of a role that has given us a strong sense of self-worth and identity can be emotionally devastating.
Our comfortable, familiar world has suddenly lost its reference points, and we are adrift.
A healthier perspective
Child-rearing is vital. Careers are necessary. But usually we fill these roles for a few decades at most. Then what?
What we need, both during and after our cherished roles, is an over-arching and undergirding sense of true meaning and purpose transcending and energizing all aspects of our lives—right down to the very last breath.
In Christ we have it, and only in Him!
“I came,” He said, “that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (John 10:10).
When Christ is at the very center of our lives, then everything else falls into place. We do not derive our identity from a role, but from our relationship with Him.
That’s what gives us the ability to adapt, adjust, and even thrive regardless of life’s changes.
If this sounds unattainable, let’s consider this: Many who have tried Christ’s way can testify from personal experience that before they knew Him, they didn’t really know how to live.
But now they do.
And so can we.
Scripture quotations taken from the NASB: http://www.lockman.org/
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