In Guardians of the Galaxy we meet Groot. He’s the powerful counterbalance to a surly raccoon named Rocket. Groot is a giant tree-man, capable of fiercely violent force if it will protective his friends. As cool as his root combat style is, Groot’s claim to fame is his predictable answer to all inquiries: “I am Groot.”
Identity is Intentional
No matter what the question, Groot’s reply is the same… “I am Groot.” Depending on the situation, Rocket is able to decipher the nuances embedded in his friend’s simple statement.
There’s a lesson about Christian identity here. Every situation we face must be answered with “I am a child of Christ.” Our identity in Christ must be claimed during every test. Like Groot, saying “I am a child of Christ” will have a layered meaning depending on the situation. Our identity in Christ requires appropriate action based on the need at hand. The point here is consciously claim your identity in Christ when life quizzes you.
Galatians 2:20 (KJV)
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Back up Your Identity with Deeds
We need to claim our identity at every bend in the river, but saying “I am a child of Christ” is only one side of the coin. Groot doesn’t say alot, he doesn’t need to. His deeds speak louder! We know the essence of Groot by his conduct. The Christian life should be no different.
James 2:18 (ESV)
But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
John 13:35 (NIV)
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
On a dingy outpost, nestled in the vast stars of outer space, Groot shows tender kindness to a little girl by making her a flower. Groot stops his galactic campaign and loves the least of these. He is Groot. Can we be the light of Christ to the world around us? By God’s grace may it be so.