I just finished reading Grace Rehab: The Power of Labeling Yourself the Way God Labels You (read my review) and I’d like to introduce you to the author, Bill Giovannetti. Since the book is about labeling yourself the way God labels you, I thought it would be fitting to let Bill introduce himself.
Friends in Christ, I’d like you to meet, Bill Giovannetti:
Hello, my name is Bill. I am a child of God, spiritual royalty, and a joint-heir with Jesus. I am destined to reign with him someday, but, until that days comes, I live by faith in the victory Christ has already won.
My sins are all forgiven.
My righteousness is utterly secure.
My salvation is everlasting.
My identity stands safe in his embrace.
You might know me as author, pastor, Chicago sports fan, friend, professor, or guy down the street. Heaven knows me as a shimmering receptacle of the glory of God.
The mightiest angels snap to attention when I walk through heaven’s gates. They back away as I approach God’s throne. They marvel that a flesh and blood mortal—frail, oftentimes failing, and all the time weak—would dare to talk to God as I do. They clap their hands and wave their wings to cheer the mysterious decrees God makes in answer to my prayers.
People may look at me and scoff. They’re not impressed. They see my imperfections. They call me stupid, too old, too young, too short, too fat, irrelevant. Dysfunctional. Not very tough. Not athletic. Not wealthy. They think I’m just another small-town guy caught in the same rat race as everyone else.
People have no clue.
Wherever I go, God goes with me. He shelters me with his omnipotence. A squad of angels watches over me.
The demons claw at me to bring me down, but God smacks them so hard, they can’t scurry away fast enough.
Voices from my past seek to crush me. They flash my secret sins before my mind’s eye. They throw my failures in my face. They spew forth reminders of the times I’ve let down my family, my church, and my God. But God’s Spirit rises up to smash those voices into a slimy mess like flies on a swatter. Your past is under the blood, he reminds me. And God has used you to bless countless lives in ways you can’t understand this side of heaven.
Frightening prospects of future disaster rise up to intimidate me—monsters of financial insecurity, ghosts of medical problems yet to come, fanged hordes of societal decay, and hellish beasts of wars on the horizon—yet Christ in me calms my anxious heart. Let not your heart be troubled, he says. I’ve already been to the future. I’ve written the end of the story, and guess what…WE WIN!
Who am I?
I am in Christ. I am forgiven. I am justified. I am reconciled. I am adopted. I am accepted. I am redeemed. I am blessed. I have an Advocate. I have access. I am complete in Him. I have power. I have dominion. I have a superpower. I am delivered from darkness. I am an heir of God. I am being sanctified.
God calls me beautiful, and beloved, and the apple of his eye.
Hello, my name is Bill, and I am in Christ.
Don’t mess with me.
–Bill Giovannetti, Grace Rehab
I’d like to try writing my own introduction framed like this. I’d encourage you to do the same. It would be an identity-affirming and faith-building experience to speak the words God would speak about you. If you’d like to practice, feel free to try your introduction in the comments.