Vertical identity is rooted in worshiping God as Savior.

God is Savior because we are sinners. Worshiping God as Savior means that the most significant drama in my life is not what will happen to my marriage, children, possessions, or career, but what will happen to my sin.

It means that the most wonderful thing that could ever happen in my life is my salvation. It means that the most wonderful thing that I could be called is not boss, or husband, or father, or friend, but “child of God.”

This identity defines your deepest, most pervasive problem. It’s the thing that you most desperately need help with. The Bible says it very clearly. Because we are sinners…

God is focused on delivering us “from such a deadly peril” (2 Corinthians 1:10)

Rescuing us “from the domain of darkness” (Colossians 1:13)

Conforming us “to the image of his Son” (Romans 8:29)

Allowing us to “become partakers of the divine nature” (2 Peter 1:4)

Purifying us “from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9)

So as to “purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14)

Phrase after phrase reminds us of our true identity, and therefore, what we truly need. While we think “we need” our lives to be comfortable, successful, and predictable, God is willing to compromise all of these in order to deal with our deepest difficultly – our own sin.

When you fail to worship God as Savior, forgetting your identity as a sinner, you’ll be completely confused during life. But to the degree that you recognize your identity as sinner, life will begin to make sense to you.

God has not forgotten you. He has not singled you out for particular abuse. He is near and He is active. In love He is working on your biggest problem, and He will not stop working until the job is done.

Reflection Questions

1. If you’re honest, what do you often name as your “biggest problem” in life?

2. How can you practically remind yourself of your deepest need?

3. How can you improve at worshiping God as Savior in your everyday life?

Paul David Tripp

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