Looking in the mirror - both physically and spiritually - can be a challenging experience for many of us. We often struggle to see ourselves for who we truly are, instead projecting our past scars and experiences onto our reflection. This tendency to forget our true identity is what Ann Voskamp calls "chronic soul amnesia." However, by continually turning to Christ and the cross, we are reminded of our true identity and purpose as children of God.
Our identity in Christ is the key to overcoming chronic soul amnesia. When we focus on physical reminders of who we are in Christ and who we choose to follow, we can affirm, "This is who I really am." Despite past struggles and the scars they may have left, the cross is our symbol of identity. It represents our penance, providence, path, protection, purpose, passion, and peace. It signifies Jesus, our salvation, and ultimately transforms us at the core of who we are.
When we look in the mirror, we may still see our brokenness and mistakes resulting from sin in the world. However, in the redemption of the cross, knowing we are loved, accepted, and saved by Jesus, we can find true peace. Our past struggles do not define us; rather, we are defined through the cross by our relationship with Christ.
It can be difficult to bring our identity in Christ into our daily lives, but we can use physical reminders of the cross to help us remember who we truly are. Some ways we do that are by wearing a bracelet with a reminder of our identity in Christ, or having the small olive wood clinging cross from Bethlehem in our work or prayer space.
One more reminder we recently commissioned is a small tin cross made by Haitian artisans to hang above our doorframe as a constant reminder of our identity in the cross. While these simple physical reminders are not the key to our identity or salvation, they do remind us that by living out our identity in Christ, we can live cruciform, a reflection of His love to the world.
Our true reflection is not what we see in the mirror, but rather our identity in Christ. By turning to the cross and accepting Jesus as our savior in all things, we can overcome chronic soul amnesia and live out our true purpose. Let us remember the importance of our faith and gratitude in all aspects of our lives and continually strive to see ourselves and others through the lens of Christ's love.