Identity: The Hub of the Problem

At Total Wellness Resource Center we have made a bold commitment to seeing our clients as a whole person and helping them in every area of their lives. This is because we have found that becoming out of balance in one area can lead to problems in other seemingly unrelated areas.  For example – marriage difficulties can effect job performance.

But there is one facet of life that has the greatest effect upon our client’s growth. This area supersedes all others and if not addressed can lead to stagnation and futility. We liken it to the hub of a wheel. The spokes of the wheel proceed from the hub and if they become detached then there is no possibility of moving forward. The hub from which all areas of life are connected is our identity. The reason I share this with you as spiritual leaders is because we are often duped into focusing on the peripheral issues because they are so much more visible.

We will never surpass our identity and our identity will never surpass the basis from which we derive our meaning, value and purpose.

This leads inevitably to God because all other philosophies create a black hole of hopelessness as they are inherently meaningless. Meaning requires intelligence. The universe has no intrinsic meaning except for what utility provides if there is no intelligence behind its creation. Therefore, in order for our lives to have meaning that meaning must be found in why we exist - which is God’s territory since he is the Creator.  

We can never know who or what we are till we know at least something of what God is.
— A.W. Tozer

What we think of ourselves (our identity) is the one absolute life altering belief and is a constant for all ages, education levels, and social strata. No other belief will impact our life more than what we believe about ourselves other than what we believe about God. The problem is our clients almost never come to us with this as their primary complaint. Identity issues never show themselves plainly, they hide in the frustrations and failures of our lives. For as Henry Ford once said;

Whether you think you can or think you can’t you’re right
— Henry Ford

So where do we see identity beliefs hiding? Here are a few of the places:

The search for a satisfying career

  • The food addiction
  • Depression
  • Loneliness
  • Sexual Promiscuity

At the heart of these problems is an underlying belief that keeps the person stuck in their difficulty.

We become whoever we think we are.

But it’s not just a matter of thinking positively and mentally forcing ourselves into good self-esteem. Contrary to popular belief, we are not the creators of truth. Physical laws apply even if we don’t believe in them. For example; if you don’t believe in gravity just jump out of an airplane and see which way you fall. If physical laws are true why would we expect something as important as Meaning, Significance and Purpose to be relative? Understand, I am not saying we can’t psych ourselves into thinking things about ourselves that are not true. We do it all the time and that is a real problem. I have sat in front of countless clients who tenaciously believe a lie about their identities and are reinforcing that lie by their actions. (i.e. I am nothing but a stinking drunk so that is why I drink) But if we want to have the wind of absolute truth at our backs we must build our identities upon that which is changeless and unassailable. Where we derive our meaning, significance and purpose must be as true as gravity or the rising of the sun. 

Over the coming weeks I will devote the Frontline Blogs to the challenge of developing our true identity and how to lead others in that process. I believe that we will never be set free from the symptoms until we have found the freedom that is in knowing our God and then understanding our rightful place in his universe. As always this journey of discovery will be practical and I will always attempt “to keep the cookies on the bottom shelf”. For in the end our success as spiritual leaders is judged by not what we understand but on what we are able to impart to others.