Back home, I was exposed to a lot of the “Don’t get your identity from what you do” or “Don’t work just BE” messages.
It is a dangerous thing to strive to do work or ministry in the flesh, and then put our identity in our efforts. It is good to encourage people to pull back from this striving, and rest in being with Him.
But the work produced by faith, the labour prompted by love, and endurance inspired by hope in Christ is different. (1 Thess 1:3) Spirit-led work (while it does require rest) is the life-giving food that Jesus talked about in John 4.
I would suggest that the idea of entirely separating our identity from what we do may not be a very Christian response. We get our identity from the life of Christ in us, and Christ did real things and work. So we can recognize and confidently identify ourselves with this work of Christ in us. After all, that was how Paul plainly and confidently identified himself as a minister of the gospel to the nations.
“It is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.”
- Phillipians 2:13
“My Father is always at word to this day, and I, too, am working.”
- John 5:17
Jesus lived to speak the truth and do the Father’s works with real people. If he’s living in you, then that life will continue to spill out to the people around you.
In other words… you were (re)born for this!
“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
- Ephesians 2:10