Have you ever played tag?
While playing tag, there are two ways to behave — evade or pursue. The tagger seeks out a pursuant, runs them down, and touches them. The touched person shifts from the evader to the pursuer. Does the tag game resemble the way we do life? I think so. There are days I am the evader — evading hard conversations, certain kinds of people, and my internal feelings.
On other days, I attack life and pursue my dreams and desires. On those days, I am confident, bold, and spiritually prepared to take on every challenge.
God has not given us a spirit of fear but power, love, and a sound mind. (II Timothy 1:7, NKJV)
God has tagged you and me with power, love, and a sound mind. There are other tags that we silently carry around, and those tags are heavy.
The tags of the world
Tags are not always good, and most tags or labels are negative. Many of us began wearing tags as kids, and our high school friends coined the heaviest of these tags.
She is so intelligent (others feel less than that).
He’s a hunk.
She is so beautiful.
He is a handful. You know he has anxiety, right?
She’s a compulsive liar
He’s a penny pincher.
He is full of anger.
She was voted most likely to succeed.
Few tags are positive and empowering. For instance, my family voted me “the gambler and a loser.” I was a childhood pool hustler. Tags can also become a way of life. Have you carried a tag that became the way you live? Was your tag a nasty lie about you? Maybe you were tagged too small, too large, too ambitious, too much, too intelligent, too beautiful, too naive, or something else.
Specific tags are hard to shake and even harder to forget. A tag has the power to define our character and behavior. Greater still, tags define us in ways that create failure and unbecoming behavior. Negative labels limit our potential and steal our ability to change and grow. Some tags stick forever — certainly in our minds. Do we ever forget being picked last in the schoolyard or the teacher tagging us as stupid? The horror stories about our tags go on and on.
Labels and tags can be a thief to our personal and spiritual growth. You will never outgrow what you believe about yourself. Even Jesus tagged folk. When Jesus tagged people, it was prophetic and empowering. Here are a few tags that Jesus coined.
And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock, I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. (Matthew 16:18, NKJV)
“Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?” Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”(Acts 9:3–6, NKJV)
Then Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he has done to Your saints in Jerusalem. And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name.” But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.” (Acts 9:13–15, NKJV)
Jesus tagged Saul of Tarsus as “a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.” What a powerful tag. Saul carried this tag every day of his life and went on to write 2/3 of the New Testament. He also held the label of suffering for Christ.
What tags are you carrying?
God has tagged all His children and you with His love and anointing.
But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us (Ephesians 2:4, NKJV)
But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teaches you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him. (I John 2:27, NKJV)
God has also tagged you as His adopted son or daughter.
For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:15, NKJV)
So you can see the battle between the world’s tags and God’s tags. Which tag do you believe? The tags from negative friends or the tags that God has pronounced over your life? It matters. What matters most is what God thinks about you. People who know their creator find their significance in the tags and promises from God and His word.
The highest sense of significance comes from knowing our creator. God skillfully made us and tags us with words like wonderful.
For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, which my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me when as yet there were none of them. How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I counted them, they would be more in number than the sand; when I awake, I am still with You. (Psalm 139:7–14, NKJV)
Are you playing tag with God?
If you are, stop evading His pursuit.
He wants to let you know, “tag, you’re it.”
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This article first appeared here.