Identity Crisis

Proverbs 9

Several months ago, my daughter whispered to me at a department store register, “Mommy, is that a man or a woman?” I looked two registers over to see to whom she was referring and my heart sank. I was going to have to explain to my 9-year-old child that the “woman” was a “man” who wanted to be a “woman.”  When I see someone so confused, it breaks my heart, and I want to know how this identity crisis has evolved and why so many people in our country are unwilling to embrace who God made them to be.

Proverbs 9 answers my question: Both Wisdom and Folly are perched at the highest point of the city, calling out to the simple to come and dine with them. They have both prepared a feast; however, only Wisdom makes a promise: She promises understanding and life, and that is indeed what the person who seeks wisdom will receive. Folly only entices people to come and enjoy. Her invitation is simply for pleasure. And the end result of that pleasure is unbeknownst to her victims: “But little do they know that the dead are there, that her guests are in the depths of the grave.” (Proverbs 9:18)

So how did our two God-made genders of man and woman become 70-plus designations of everything from transgender to bisexual? And how did so many in our world embrace this idea? Folly’s voice has wooed a generation to believe they are not good enough and they need to change their identity to compensate. Society has told us that God’s creation is wrong and needs to be remade. That men and women were made to be interchangeable. These ideas have turned our world upside down, with some catastrophic results: the AIDS epidemic, depression, suicide, social ridicule, social division, and an entire generation of confused, self-defined people. Folly has indeed trapped her guests “in the depths of the grave.” And the sad thing is they are fighting their way to that grave with every militant step for their rights that they take.

For those of us who prescribe to Wisdom, how can we join her in calling out to those who follow Folly? Proverbs 9:7 tells us that “Whoever corrects a mocker invites insult; whoever rebukes a wicked man incurs abuse.” We may well receive abuse if we try to correct those who are Folly followers but we are commissioned to make disciples and share the Good News (Matthew 28:20). We are commanded to love our neighbor as ourself (Leviticus 19:18). This means we cannot simply stand by and watch. But, we also must not judge or say hateful things. We should show them love and pray for them.

Pray for them to see God’s love. Tell them about God’s love. Point them to God’s love. Maybe this is inviting them to do Bible study with you. Maybe it is sharing your faith. Maybe it’s just listening to their feelings. But it’s always prayer.

If you are interested in learning how to share the Gospel with transgender people, this is a good article.

That’s what Wisdom was calling about – for us to join her in a feast. She just wants us to know love. Through love, understanding will come. There is no harsh judgment in Wisdom. She only says, “Leave your simple ways and you will live, walk in the way of understanding.” (Proverbs 9:6)

Let’s keep our focus on Wisdom, and let’s share her voice when God prompts us.

4 thoughts on “Identity Crisis

  1. Thank you for sharing this. It is difficult to put judgement aside, sometimes I justify my judgement as “I’m just trying to help” but it’s not my place. Thank you for reminding me what my role is and the power of prayer.

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  2. This is so amazing. Paul and I were having a similar discussion recently. I do not know how to share your blog but this would be a good one for facebook if I knew how. However, I do not think I would do it on your behalf in case someone took offense out on you. The related discussion Paul and I had is that in so many areas of our culture we have accepted sex as a recreational activity rather than the gift God created that creates a lifelong bond between a man and woman. Thank you for sharing. Anytime I hear someone’s assessments of God’s plan being in line with mine it gives affirmation to where I am in my walk. Thank you for being faithful. My prayer is constantly asking God for affirmation that I am accurately assessing.

    Linda Cleveland

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