When you enter any facility where secrets or other valuables are stored, you are required to identify yourself in a manner that convinces any guards on hand that you should be allowed. It may be a badge, or having the proper fingerprint or retina blood vessel pattern, or a password. Similar identification can be used to prevent unauthorized entry even into computerized environments.
A lower level of identification is required when you are being introduced to the friend of a friend or a family member. When you are introduced by someone, they offer information about you that declares what they believe to be your identity. When you introduce yourself, you may use different data that you would prefer to be known by.
The data used to identify you can be boiled down to being in two categories of ideas: what you do, and whom you are related to. Your name, your age, your height or weight – these are labels that are extra information that you can tack on to the basic data, but that basic information is your work (past, present, future), and your relationships.
Surnames like “Mac Donald” or “John’s son” or “Ben Laden” describe relationships. Others, like “Miller” or “Smith” or “Hunter” or “Carpenter” describe work. Using your hometown to inform someone of your identity affiliates you with the rest of the citizens of that town. Where you went to whatever school you studied in affiliates you with both a tribe and a career.
Part of your work, which constitutes part of your identity, is related to the work you do that requires empowerment by the Spirit of God. Your spiritual gift, which is something that every believer should receive and allow to influence them, is part of who you are. If you know that part of your identity, be bold to think of yourself that way, and to introduce yourself that way in any appropriate situation.
In the last verse before 1 Corinthians 13 and in the first verse after it, Paul instructed the believers in Corinth to both desire and to pursue spiritual gifts. Chapter 13 is instruction on how to be influenced by the Spirit of the God Who so loved the world that He sent Jesus into it, and continues to express His love for it by sending you into it. It’s important.