What If God Sees You Differently?

“Hi! I’m Chris, and I’m an alcoholic.”

“Hi, Chris,” a dozen voices respond.

One person’s brokenness and honesty and a small community’s embrace. Welcome, Chris. We know how it is. Come be you and be one of us.

In Alcoholics Anonymous or any recovery group, the journey of healing begins with owning the problem. The Bible calls that repentance: we recognize something about us is fundamentally messed up, and we drop the games, lies, and excuses and simply admit it. We’re fallen and we can’t get up.

But we want to. Oh, how long for something better.

That’s what salvation is about. We come honestly before God and say, “God, have mercy on me, a sinner.” And we trust in the simplicity of the gospel: “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9 NIV).

But God’s salvation is about far more than escaping judgment and hell. God doesn’t just forgive our sins—he changes us. That’s the good news: not just forgiveness through Christ’s death but a new beginning through his resurrection, and with it, a new identity.

That’s what it means to be born again. In Christ, you’re a “new creation”—or, in the words of The Living Bible, “a brand new person inside. He [or she] is not the same anymore. A new life has begun!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Throughout the New Testament writings, particularly Romans and other letters of Paul the apostle, this is the gospel in its fullness: forgiveness, justification—and an utterly new mode of being, empowered by Christ in you (John 14:20). You are not what you were. You are something new. A son or daughter of God. One of his righteous ones. A saint in the true biblical sense of the word.
 
Let’s put this in balance. You’re still a physical being, equipped with a body wired for temptation and sin. So were the apostles and other New Testament believers. But what the Bible calls “the flesh” no longer defined them, and it no longer defines you. Why? Because “you . . . are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you” (Romans 8:9 ESV). Who you really, most deeply are has been relocated to a deeper, holy place.

We tend to live out of our sense of identity. If you think of yourself primarily as a sinner, it’s no surprise when you sin. That’s what sinners do.

But if you trust in Jesus as your Savior, it’s time to start thinking of yourself very differently, as a child of God whose nature is holiness. That’s how God himself sees you—not because he’s playing Let’s Pretend but because that’s who he’s recreated you to be. How could he settle for less when he purchased you for himself with the blood of his own Son?

Now when you struggle against sin, it’s because sin is foreign to your very nature. You are reborn, equipped, and reoriented within for something higher and better and eternal. That’s your heart’s desire—because it’s who you are.

You are God’s and he is yours. See yourself as God sees you.“Hi, I’m (your name here), and I’m a child of God. I struggle with (your sin goes here), and I want to be honest about it. But I’m not that sin. Righteousness is my birthright. And I need your help, brothers and sisters, to walk as who I really am in Christ.”

Hi, You. Welcome to the club.

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