13 Mar 2006

identity crisis.

When i open my wallet and look inside i find my identity cards. My birth certificate says that i was born in Canada... my drivers license says that i am 184 centimeters tall... my polish residency card says that my eyes are the colour of beer (i thought it was funny that they have such a colour in Polish so i chose it!) and that i am a legal resident of Poland. Even though i have a wallet full of cards that define who i am i find myself asking the same question alot lately- Who am I?

Maybe it is because Poles, even more so that Westerners seem to define who you are by what you do. And quite honestly they just understand or have a clue what we are doing here. My roomate and i have begun to joke about "the big question"...in Polish it usually comes across in the form of "czym zajmujesz?" or "kim jestes z zawodu?"... meaning 'what do you DO?' or "who are you by profession?" ...within minutes of starting a conversation with someone new you can bet "the question" is coming- shelley has decided recently to just tell them she's a missionary- she's usually going for shock factor when she tells them that at the smoky pool hall as take a gulp of beer. she said they pretty much change the conversation as fast as they can... i think it probably doens't make much sense to them. but that's ok, there was a lot of people who didn't understand jesus either.

I guess Jesus had in some ways a similar identity crisis. I wonder if when people asked him 'czym zajmujesz?' how he answered day after day.
- i'm a carpenter
- i am the way and the truth and the life
- i am the good shepherd
- i go from temple to temple teaching people about my father
- i'm a miracle worker and for kicks sometimes i cast out demons

Jesus sure knew who he was but for some reason people had a hard time understanding. At the same time he wanted to be understood like when he was walking on the road to some village with his disciples and on the way he asked them, "Who do people say I am?" i don't think he was just making conversation. i think he cared. he cared about who people said he was. but at the end of the day he knew who he was.

anyways, i'm still thinking about it. quite honestly it kinda bugs me that i'm not polish. in some ways i can so easily slip into a polish world and talk with poles and pretty much they accept me as part of them. but other times i feel it - i'm a foreigner, and i always will be. i guess at the end of the day i just need to cling to my identity in Christ. God doesn't care where we are from, what language we speak or what kind of accent we speak it with. He cares about us as his children. One day we will all worship around the throne and it won't really matter who we are - but who He is.