There are so many different facts about our lives that inform our self-perception, based on everything from our education and socioeconomic level to our interpersonal relationships and sexuality.
There are so many different labels, some with shame and stigmas attached, that we find ourselves bearing. Whether we want them or not the world has a way of assigning them to us.
When you take those outward facts about what we do or where we've been ("I'm a UNH Alumni from a blue-collar neighborhood and I'm a single mother with two kids") and combine them with the labels we're given ("I'm divorced" "She was anorexic" "I have PTSD" "He has ADHD" "He's an alcoholic") is that who we really are? Obviously, the answer is partly Yes. Those all may be true things. But what is the Truest Thing About You?
Everyone else seems to have us figured out, yet there is so much inner wondering about who we really are.
Who can tell us who we are? Who really knows us, all our layers and all our questions? Who can give us our true name?
That's what David Lomas' extremely readable book is all about. Where does my foundational identity come from? Is it determined by what I *Have* or what I *Desire* or something else entirely?
This book was intriguing right from the concept on in. The Truest Thing About You could be a fast read because it draws you right in, but it's the kind of book you'll return to. David tells personal stories, about his own life and the life of his congregation in San Francisco and de always points back to God and what He says about us.
I put this book on my shortlist for New Christians, and I can't wait to share it with someone.
(I don't know why I'm surprised by how good thing book is. It was published by David C Cook after all. If you're looking for challenging, gracious, winsome book- apologetics to Christian living- then do check out a David C Cook title.)
Identity is important. It is the lens through which we see the world. Our actions rise out of our sense of identity.
Usually we think of our identity as a mixture of what we do (I'm an executive.), what we have (I'm a house owner.), and what we desire. (I found his discussion on desire to be especially insightful. We Christians are told that if we desire God more, then we will have a real relationship with Him. The desire defines us.)
We also have so many voices telling us who we are, labeling us.
Lomas argues, "Identity in Christ is truer than every other voice we hear." He defines identity: "The deep knowledge of where I come from, where I'm going, and to whom I belong." This Imago Dei, who we are, comes before what we do. Our actions flow from our identity. "The call of the Christian life is to become who you are."
I was impressed with this book. In today's culture there is so much pressure to be associated with a particular social identity. Lomas calls us to our deepest identity, to our identity in Christ. He encourages us to recognize what God says is true about us, our truest identity into which we can live.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.