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“Who do you say that I am?”

“Who do you say that I am?”

“Then He asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” (Matthew 16:15-16 NLT)

Who do you say that I am? 

As I write this simple question, my heart seems to have stopped. Tears threaten to crumble the dam, that I mindfully erected, long ago. 

A protective dam – one that holds all my sorrows, my unmet- unvoiced longings, my fierce disappointments and my unanswered prayers are all kept at bay from connecting with my one-true heart. But today, I am faced with this one question, and this dam of pain, must give-way to truth. 

“Linda, who do YOU say that I am?” In voicing this question to myself, I realize that my response will answer for me – Everything! 

It is the answer for every dream, that has not been realized. Every wound, that has not been healed. Every loss, that has not yet been restored. Every sorrow, that has not been lifted.

The worship song written by Matt Redman comes to mind. 

Blessed Be Your Name
In the land that is plentiful 
Where Your streams of abundance flow
Blessed be Your name

Blessed Be Your name
When I’m found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed Be Your name

*See lyrics and You Tube link below.

As I reiterate this question to myself, I realize that I had forgotten that this question has been an underlying theme of my life. 

“Who do you say that I am?” 

This question has taken me through seasons of sorrow, deep loss, grievous sin, retched -paralyzing fears, enduring year upon year of wearing the plastic mask of imperfection, facing myself in the mirror, and admitting the truth of who I am, in Christ alone.

“Who do you say that I am?” 

I say you are Lord! You are holy. You are my Righteous Redeemer. You are my Savior. You, O Lord are my Shepherd. You are my heavenly Father. You are the King of Kings. You are Wonderful Counselor. 

You are the One who sees me, you are the One who knows me, you love me with an everlasting love, you are the One who carries me and the One who tucks me beneath your wings of grace, you are the One who calls me precious, Beloved daughter, friend – You are Jesus Christ, the Righteous One!

When I forget in whom I place my trust, I am prone to falter. I am more readily exposed to accept the lies of the enemy, and to not receive the truth of my Savior. I am easily tripped up by disappointment, wiped out by discouragement, or even angry when things don’t align with my plans.

How about you? In your time of trial, in your place of lost, in your darkest grief, your biggest unknown; have you stopped to ponder this question?  “Who do you say that I am? “

If your answer is Jesus, Son of God, Savior; then who is Jesus to you, when you face the news from a crushing heartache? Who is Jesus to you, when the words of a friend bruise deeply? Who is Jesus to you, when your spirit flounders beneath grave disappointment?

Is Jesus the Living Word to you? Is Jesus the voice of truth? Is Jesus trustworthy when you lack trust in others around you? Is Jesus your Savior, King, Redeemer… Enough in all situations?

Stop and answer this question for yourself. Now place your problem, your need, your loss, your hardship, your fears – alongside of who you say that Jesus is. 

Problem:  When life brings grave disappointment, an unbearable weight of anxiety, burdens too heavy to bear, the vast question of the unknown, the one thing you fear the most or weariness of heart … “Who do you say that I am?”

Disappointment:

“Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again–my Savior and my God!” (Psalm 42:11NLT )

Anxiety:

“Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7 NLT)

Burdens:

“Give your burdens to the LORD, and He will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.” (Psalm 55:22 NLT)

Unknown:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.” (Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT)

“The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.” (Psalm 32:8-9 NLT)

Weariness:

“Then Jesus said, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28 NLT)

Fear:

“Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with My victorious right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10 NLT)

Stop! Take the time to ask yourself: 

“Is God enough to meet me in the middle of my mess ups? Is God enough to trust – when I am paralyzed with fear? Is God enough to lead me when I don’t know the way to go? Is God enough to depend on – when the way is marked with so much suffering that I cannot see through my tears, my depression and my doubts?” 

“Is God enough to bring back my wayward child? Is God enough to mend my shattered marriage, my splintered home, my fractured relationships? Is God enough to provide for me in my time of lack?” 

“Is God enough to take this stubborn heart of mine and lovingly remake me, remold me and patiently set in play the re-creation process of metamorphous; changing me from pitiful – to glorious – like a caterpillar to a butterfly?”

“Who do you say that I am” 

As I have repeatedly asked myself this question, I feel as if I have been sucker punched!  As a child of God, I must be able to answer this. And honestly, my answer is Jesus!

As I answer this with great conviction I know that I must see Him as counselor, miracle worker, giver of life, lover of my soul, forgiver, and filler of holiness. I must believe something greater than I have ever believed before. 

Today I am reminded that the God I serve, really does see me, and He knows what I need. He knows the fears I have for the future, the discouragement I faced – even today, the deep unmet longings I have been carrying, the sorrows of the past that often weigh me down, and the desires I look forward to for the future. 

He knows my past journey of infertility, my burden of an imprisoned child, the loss of loved ones, the physical distance from family as the ocean separates us, the depression that lingers in the shadows and threatens to take me under- even today. 

As women of authenticity who have been created; different by God’s amazing design, we are all being asked this simple, yet probing questions.  “Who do you say that I am?” How we answer this question, will be the difference of entering our next difficulty with hope, or feeling completely helpless and out of control. 

Spiritual Reflection: 

“Who do you say that I am” 

If the answer to this question is Jesus Christ, then think through what you are going through right now. How does God want to meet you in the middle of this struggle? 

If you didn’t know how to answer this question, I would love for you to discover the hope that can be found in knowing Jesus Christ. Please take the time to email me at linda@lindajanedingeldein.com 

Prayer: 

God, 

Thank you, that I know who You are. Thank you, that you will guide me along the very best pathway for my life. You will advise and watch over me. O God, you are my rock and my fortress. For the honor of your name, lead me out of this danger. Thank you that you will always guide me with Your loving eye upon me. 

God, right now I give all my worries and cares to you; because I know that you care for me. You love me with an everlasting love, and with unfailing love you have drawn me – to You! 

God, help me to remember that if I confess my sins to you, you are faithful and just to forgive me of all my sins, and to cleanse me. For You, O LORD, are merciful and compassionate, you are slow to get angry and are filled with unfailing love. 

Remind me today that Your grace is all that I need. Your power works best in my weakness. O God, may the power of Christ work through me today; for when I am at my weakest place, I am made strong in You! In Jesus powerful name, Amen 

The following prayer scriptures are taken from the New Living Translation of the Bible. (Psalm 32:8; Psalm 31:3; 1 Peter 5:7; Jeremiah 31:3; 1 John 1:9; Psalm 145:8; Psalm 86:15: 2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

*Lyrics and You Tube link: 

Blessed Be Your Name

Matt Redman 

Blessed Be Your Name
In the land that is plentiful 
Where Your streams of abundance flow
Blessed be Your name

Blessed Be Your name
When I’m found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed Be Your name

Every blessing You pour out, I’ll 
Turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

Blessed be Your name
When the sun’s shining down on me
When the world’s ‘all as it should be’
Blessed be Your name

Blessed be Your name
On the road marked with suffering 
Though there’s pain in the offering 
Blessed be Your name

Every blessing You pour out I’ll 
Turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name, oh

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

God you give and take away
Oh you give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name, oh

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

Blessed be Your name

You give and take away
God give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

God you give and take away
Oh you give and take away
But my heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

Oh you give and take away
God give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name, oh

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

Blessed be Your name

Mga Songwriter: Beth Redman / Matt Redman

Lyrics ng Blessed Be Your Name © Capitol Christian Music Group

“who do you say that i am?”
Photography by Linda Jane Dingeldein
Sonya’s Garden
Cavite, Philippines

 

 I Am The Living Water

 

I Am All That You Need

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am the way

I am the door

I am your refuge

I am the bread of life

I call you Beloved Child!

 

After twenty-five years as a missionary, Linda Jane is now entering a new ministry role as pastor’s wife; where she will serve alongside of her husband Joel, in Warren, Pennsylvania. The calling to serve Christ remains the same, as does her endeavor to reach women with the gospel message, and to teach them to live authentically out of who God created them to be. Linda's passion is communication through the spoken and written word, photography and illustration. She loves all things cultural, creative and colorful.

One Comment

  • John M Weaver

    Thank you Linda Jane!
    As I read, and wept silently, I asked that all important question over and over.
    I know part of my problem is that I believe He is Who he says He is; but don’t always trust him to be that…for me.
    I thank God for belief in His declarations of His character; and long for enough faith to yield all to that Unique, Incomparable, Everlasting and Only…GOD.

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