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A Real Nobody

by David Deffenbaugh

We have all suffered through periods of low self-worth, times when we have felt of little value. We may have been rejected by those from whom we desired acceptance, or failed in some endeavor and disappointed those who were counting on us. We felt like a real nobody.

But that doesn't come close to the case of "Mr. Nobody". That is the title ascribed to a young Englishman who was mugged in Toronto, Canada in late 1999. As a result of the mugging, he lost not only his memory, but also all his legal documentation. He has no idea who he is or where he is from. His distinctive British accent is a clue, but extensive publicity in England by the media has produced no hint of the man's origin. What is more, he is unable to leave Canada without a passport, and cannot obtain a passport without a birth certificate, and cannot obtain a birth certificate without knowing his name or place of birth. This unfortunate young man is about as close to a real nobody as anyone can be. Imagine the relief and elation when and if his identity is ever discovered.

Consider the identity God gives those who are His. No matter who or what we may have been before, when we become a Christian we obtain a new identity. That identity includes a new name. Isaiah prophesied concerning God's people, "You will be called by a new name which the mouth of the LORD will designate" (Isaiah 62:2). To the persecuted Christians of Pergamum who overcame, the promise was given of "a new name written on the stone" (Revelation 17).

That new identity also includes a new family, the family of God. He allows us to call Him Father. "Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, 'Abba! Father!'" (Galatians 4:6). We are able to be known as His children. "See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are" (1 John 3:1). What is more, we are "of God's household" (Ephesians 2:19).

Our new identity also provides a place where we belong. "So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints" (Ephesians 2:19).

You see, in Christ, no one is a nobody.

"...upon this rock I will build My church..." Matt.16:18

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