When the Enemy Attacks Your Identity
Written by Phylicia Masonheimer | May 25, 2016
Your identity is powerful. Don’t believe it? Think about this: The person you believe yourself to be controls what you do and how you live. Since our identity shapes the trajectory of our lives, our spiritual enemy wants nothing more than to take it captive.
Satan assaults identity. He knows that if he can control who you perceive yourself to be, he can control how you live. It sounds a little crazy, but there is a battle for your future going on right now. There is a battle for your identity.
Satan’s attacks on young people are meant to steal hope, kill confidence and destroy identity. The enemy wants you to disbelieve your value. It’s the lie he’s used from the beginning to get you to doubt God’s truth:
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1)
Satan wants you to doubt your value and identity in God. But there is good news: Jesus Christ is the protector of our identity, the rescuer of our souls and the One who overcomes! To fight Satan’s lies about who we are, we must guard ourselves with God’s Word—the best place to discover our true identity:
When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, Then You knew my path. (Psalm 142:3)
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you. (Jeremiah 1:5)
How can a young woman keep her way pure? By guarding it according to your Word. (Psalm 119:9)
The enemy works with shame, doubt and insecurity. God’s truth brings holiness, freedom and assurance that He will be with us every step of the way. He equips us to fight back against the lies. Here are three ways to do just that.
- Know whose you are: Because of Christ, we are adopted into the family of God. The grace Christ has through the Father has been bestowed upon us because off the sacrifice Jesus made. We are His. Because we are precious to God, the Enemy wants nothing more than to separate us from Him. But we cannot be separated unless we choose to walk away (Romans 8:39). We are Christ’s; we belong to Him.
- Know who you are: Because we belong to Christ, the fruits of His Spirit abide in us. We have love, joy, peace—everything we need to be sustained emotionally and spiritually. God has also promised to provide for our material needs (Philippians 4:19). In Him, we are loved, adopted, protected, defended and treasured. We are His children. We are co-heirs with Christ. As we recognize who God has made us to be, we can cling to this identity even when Satan tempts us to doubt.
- Know your weakness and prepare to fight: The Bible says Satan is like a lion (1 Peter 5:8). Have you ever watched a lion attack? He usually goes for the weakest member of the herd—the one lingering at the back of the pack. Satan doesn’t fight honestly; he’s a coward. Our best defense against Him is to stay close to God, to be on guard and to know our areas of weakness and doubt. Be ready to counter his lies with truth. Be ready to call on God when he threatens who you are.
An identity crisis can come in many forms, but Satan’s tactics usually include fear: fear of singleness, fear of love, fear of motherhood, fear of abandonment. He may also use bitterness or anger, envy or materialism. We can combat these things by believing God—putting faith in who He is and who He says we are.
Today, trust God when he says who you are. Trust that you are His. Stand guard against doubt and walk in faith that God knows your path, and that before you were even born, He knew your identity—and He loved you.