Have you ever seen a movie or read a story about someone who can’t remember their identity? Forgetting your identity makes life feel upside-down— nothing feels right, even though you might be physically comfortable and cared for. Because you don’t know who you are, your purpose is fuzzy. You live with a general feeling of frustration and loss. You can’t experience true, deep joy.

Sound familiar? 

Many of these symptoms describe how Christian parents feel daily. I’ve experienced this myself as a mom and I’ve spent years walking alongside and ministering to Christian families— a constant sense of loss and frustration, little true joy, unclear life purpose… this could describe a lot of us!

The key to a life of purpose and joy is remembering who we are. Let me explain:

Remembering who we are

Life can be so chaotic for parents. Survival seems like the only goal most days. 

I don’t even have a chance to take a shower or put on some lip gloss, so when would I ever stop to think about who I am? Does anyone even do that?

As followers of Jesus, we desperately need to remember who we are. Every. Single. Day. Our kids need us to remember, and they need us to help them remember, too.

So who am I and how do I go about “remembering” that all the time? 

Preach the Gospel to yourself every day

“Preach the Gospel to yourself every day.” 

I heard this instruction many years ago and it’s had a huge impact on my daily life. I haven’t always understood clearly what it really means, but by faith I decided to start with baby steps to try to practice this admonition made famous by Jerry Bridges.

Anyone who knows the Gospel, or the big story of the Bible, can use its basic components to remember who he or she is every day. 


God made me in His own image, a treasured and loved possession, with a calling to know and follow Him. This is who I am!


The first man ignored what he knew about God and believed the lie that disobeying God would not cause him to die. So he sinned, and became a sinner. I’m his descendant, and I would have done the exact same thing in his place, so I’m a sinner, too. This is who I am!


God wouldn’t leave his special creation to die without hope, so for the sake of His own glory, he set in motion a plan to redeem to Himself anyone who would trust Him and recognize his own sin. He sent Jesus, the second person of the Divine Trinity, to die in our place and take our due punishment: death. Jesus rose from the dead on the third day, and thereby conquered sin and death. If I have placed my faith exclusively in Christ for salvation from the sin I’m fully aware I commit, then I am redeemed. This is who I am! 


As a redeemed sinner made in the image of God, my life on this earth is temporary. One day very soon, this earth will pass away, and God will restore all things to Himself, including my full restoration. I will receive a glorified body, sin will be eternally defeated and banished, and I will enjoy full and unhindered fellowship with the one Being in the universe that can provide complete satisfaction. This is who I am and will be! 

Anyone who knows the Gospel, or the big story of the Bible, can use its basic components to remember who he or she is every day.

What if you recalled the Gospel to mind daily?

How different would your daily life be if you preached all that to yourself every day? If you meditated on Gospel-rich passages of Scripture, and prayed daily that God would enable you to live in the light of who you really are? 

It’s not easy, and it’s not always fun, but it is beautifully simple. 

Remember why your family exists

The Gospel transforms how we think of ourselves individually, and it also transforms how we think of our family unit. Building on that little exercise we just did, let’s add these aspects so we can preach the Gospel to ourselves on a “family identity” level:


In Genesis 1:28, God created the family. This verse says that God blessed Adam and Eve, telling them to have children and fill the earth, and exercise dominion over it as His representatives. The Creation of the family was God’s perfect way for His created beings to represent Him and glorify Him on earth. This is who we are!


When first Eve, then Adam believed and acted on the serpent’s lie, they plunged all families that would follow them into sin. This means that every mom and dad are like Eve and Adam: susceptible to believing lies, lacking in wisdom, and suffering from an idolatrous heart that puts itself first every time. Family units are made up of sinners. This is who we are! 


As a group of sinners trying to do life together, our only hope is the work Jesus Christ did for us— both his death on the cross and his death-defeating resurrection. Every member of every family has to face sin for himself, and place personal faith in Christ. But as a family unit, we can experience life as the redeemed people of God seeking to serve and glorify Him while we fight the sin He died to defeat. This is who we are!


No matter what devastating trials we face on this earth, we can all look forward to that day when we are free from sin and able to fully glorify God together. As parents, this means we remember not to get too bogged down in things that will perish in the fire. We point our kids to that which will make them eternally happy, and help them to see truly those things that won’t. We all live for one glorious hope! This is who we are!

As redeemed children of God, we don’t have to live in confusion, feeling like life is upside-down, lacking in joy and rest. No case of forgotten identity here— the Gospel tells us exactly who we are! By the grace of God, we can remind ourselves and our children every day of the glorious truth.