Lance Armstrong was well-known as one of the greatest athletes of our time. But the key word there is ‘was’.
Up until recently, Lance was able to describe himself as the one guy in history to win seven consecutive years of the world's greatest cycling competition, the Tour de France. He was able to pioneer an international cancer-fighting charity that raised almost half a billion dollars. And he was able to hold his head up high.
But now it's all come crashing down.
In case you've been living under a rock (which means you don't read the news, which would be odd because you're reading this in a newspaper), Lance Armstrong recently admitted to Oprah Winfrey on television that he used performance-enhancing drugs. He's been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and will probably step down from his role in his charity organisation.
Literally everything his identity was tied to has been stripped away.
I wonder, how would you respond if the same thing happened to you?
If your job, career, health, marriage, family, house, car, finances, friends, everything was ruthlessly ripped out of your life, what would be left?
The answer to that question is the basis of your identity - who you really are. And there's no better answer to that question than simply this: no matter what, I'm still going to be someone who is loved by God.
If your identity is based on something you can do, then your identity will fall apart when your ability does. If your identity is based on what others think of you, then your identity will fall apart when your reputation does. But if your identity is based on the love of God, then it will last forever.
‘How do I know God loves me?’
Easy. Just look at the cross. When Jesus died he was holding his arms out wide and saying ‘I love you this much’.