Study Guide

The core of our identity is that we are created by God, in his image, and for his glory. However, our sinful nature—reinforced by our culture—is to distance ourselves from God and create our own identity. This natural tendency towards independence and autonomy can be subtle, but we must grow in self awareness and discernment, intentionally placing ourselves under God’s authority.
  1. Both our sinful nature and our modern culture instill within us feelings of personal sovereignty. What would it look like for you to release control over things that you are not in charge of? In which areas of your life do you struggle to release control to God? Why?

  2. We often abandon our identity as God’s people and shop around for other identities (parent, businessman, athlete, American, etc.). With what roles in your life do you tend to over-identify?

  3. Our desires to self-actualize and “fulfill our potential” are a form of idolatry. How can you change your thought patterns around this idea and realize that you are a small player in God’s much larger story?

  4. God’s plans are often different from our own, but they are always better. Was there a time in the past when you experienced this truth? Can you receive direction from God—particularly when it is different from your plans?

  5. There are some things we receive from God, and there are some things we are responsible for. How can you grow in discernment between these things and focus on being faithful and honoring God in the areas where you are actually in charge?

Key Points
  • In our advanced society, there is an embedded cultural arrogance. This natural independence has instilled in us a sense of personal sovereignty. We must reject this notion and come under God’s authority as his creation.

  • We have a tendency to abandon God, distance ourselves from him, and try to create and adopt new identities for ourselves.

  • Scripture tells us that we are created by God, in his image, and for his purposes and glory. We must give ourselves back to God because we are his.

  • There are some things we determine in life, and there are some things we receive from God. However, our small level of responsibility often feeds our sense of sovereignty and power. This is when we mistakenly claim responsibility for our life and abandon our position as created beings.

  • In the grand scheme of the universe, we are small players. It is a privilege to be a small part of this much bigger story of God’s love for his Son, his grace towards us, and Jesus’ honoring of the Father through our redemption.

Other Scripture References

Scripture: Genesis 1:26-29, Colossians 1:15-16

Topics: Authority, Identity