Where is your personal wealth founded? We’re not talking about investments and checking accounts. When you think about your life and the value it brings to those around you, do you follow the definition of worth that the world has created, or do you look to your Creator for His definition? Kim Vastine, Chaplain for 4word: Southlake, shares her personal journey to place her worth in God instead of allowing fears and false definitions of earthly worth to define her.
Tell us a little about yourself!
I grew up in California until my mom remarried and we moved to Idaho when I was 15. Having grown up in a strict, religious home with extreme violence, physical and sexual abuse, I learned to live with enormous fear as though it was normal. My fears included fear of men, fear of church (where there were lots of rules that I would unknowingly break), fear of lack of food and clothing, and at times, fear of a lack of any loving support.
With all of these fears, I learned quickly that I must be “strong,” keep secrets well, behave perfectly on the exterior, ignore my interior thought-life, work hard to not need anyone, and be self-sufficient. It has been a hard and circuitous journey for God to heal, restore, and make me a new creation who lives cherished and continually nourished as His beloved one. Today, I am still learning to really enjoy life day by day by playing better, having fun as a “gatherer of people,” practicing daily gratitude, and living authentically and whole-heartedly. My life mission is to champion others to become their best selves in every facet of life.
What is the difference between earthly worth and heavenly worth?
Our value here on planet Earth is usually measured by constantly shifting standards and performance requirements. These expectations are like radio airwave frequencies that are coming at us at a frenetic pace in methods that civilization has never seen before. Experts say that we’re checking our smartphones on average 47 times a day as we measure ourselves up against topics like how to raise perfect kids, how to be thinner and more beautiful, how to be successful, how to raise our financial IQ and investments and the list continues. The challenge is on to keep us constantly second-guessing our value and worth. Marketing systems are actually designed to make it clear we are just not enough.
This messaging system was actually launched in the very beginning in the Garden of Eden. We read in Genesis that the enemy of our soul cleverly suggested to Adam and Eve they were not enough. They hadn’t been given enough. They couldn’t trust God with the instructions He had given them to not eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. God in His own wisdom gave instructions to Adam and Eve that were designed to let it be their choice to choose His way over their own way. God gave Adam and Eve their heavenly worth and said, “It is good.” Yet Adam and Eve chose to believe it was not good enough.
Why do so many of us struggle to anchor ourselves in our worth in Christ?
We struggle greatly because we believe we are powerless and choose to refuse to change the channel to which we are tuned in to listening, or we don’t know we’ve been given permission to change the channel. We have the power to choose. We are powerful. As a child and into my adulthood, my channel stayed on fear. I didn’t know any better! I often made decisions out of fear of man and fear of consequences, which meant my channel was on an earthly radio station because I constantly compared my worth to what others thought of me instead of resting in how God sees me. Some of us don’t realize that we have been invited to change the channel to our own self-talk and our own self-image. That means God is for you even when others are against you (Romans 8:31).
You are God’s powerful poetry and masterpiece (Eph. 2:10) right now, not when you’ve really got your act together. Corinthians 5:17 reminds us that we who are in Christ are a new creation, everything is new and fresh. This means constantly renewable! Talk about “green” living! It means we get to powerfully choose to think as He thinks and constantly see ourselves as He sees us – we are more than enough. The challenge is that we can only think like He thinks when we are daily listening to His still small voice and reading scriptures that keep our plumb line of truth in place to counteract the terrorism of thoughts swirling all around us every day.
How can we correctly prioritize who or what is “King” in our identity and thinking?
The greatest love story of the ages is the Bible and it involves you and me (the Church) and your King Jesus Christ. At the same time, Satan is constantly creating counterfeits to God’s best for you. Timothy Keller wrote a powerful book called Counterfeit Gods, the Empty Promises of Money, Sex, and Power and the Only Hope that Matters. We have to be brutally honest and ask the Holy Spirit how idols in our culture like rampant materialism, careerism, romanticism, physical beauty, profit, fame etc. are affecting our thoughts and actions. Then we get to choose to repent and change our way of thinking and acting according to “old creation/worldly” thinking and renew our minds with His words and abundant life pathway.
I love what Paul told us in his letter to the Romans. Romans 12:2 reads, “Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you, but be inwardly transformed by the Holy Spirit through a total reformation of how you think.” He continues, “This will empower you to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in His eyes” (The Passion Translation).
What are some ways we can safeguard ourselves to always view our identity through Christ first?
Our loving King has given us more than 79 passages of TRUTH in the New Testament to remind us of our truest identity in Him. The abundant Christian life is truly about becoming who you already ARE in Christ. One of the ways we solidify who Christ says we are happens within the context of community. In Ephesians, Paul says two times to “speak the truth in love” to one another. In context, Paul is exhorting God’s children to remind one another of our true identity. That means, our brothers and sisters in Christ help us live transformed by the renewing of our mind, so we avoid measuring ourselves and our worth against the systems of the world.
How does this happen? 1) Create a strong community of people around you who are like-minded in the faith. 2) Read Scriptural promises out loud every day and marvel at the epic greatness of your Lord and what He has done and given to you. Marvel means give yourself time to be overtaken by His goodness and faithfulness. 3) Create a daily practice around the dinner table of saying out loud what you are personally grateful for what has been provided for you, through Christ Jesus, in your identity. You’ll start noticing more and more how your thoughts about identity change to become more like His.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Remember, the enemy is fighting to keep you in a place of distraction and confusion and keep you from the secret place with the Lord so you will not know what time it is. Let’s support and challenge each other in 4word groups to commit to live emotionally healthy, spiritually rich, and vibrant lives. Let’s commit to be sober and vigilant in this culture and kairos time (the appointed time for the purposes of God) in history. Jesus is returning for a waiting, ever-watchful Bride who has her eyes fixed on her King. May we be ruthless in our pursuit of His name being glorified in our lives and choosing His thoughts toward us. That transformation will cause those around you to say, “You have so much hope and confidence in who you are. It’s really beautiful.” May the Holy Spirit AWAKEN YOUR MIGHT in Him today.
Dr. Kim Vastine is a passionate communicator who enjoys equipping people to live a vibrant life in Christ and fulfill their God-given purpose. She is a REALTOR® in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area and serves as Chaplain on the 4word Board in Southlake, TX. In 2018 she launched Ambassadors of the Kingdom (AOK) which brings together local Christian business leaders to pray and serve their clients and communities well in the cities in which they serve.
She is a designated International Goodwill Ambassador by the Interfaith Peace-Building Initiative for her international work to build reconciliation on behalf of impoverished women and children through a non-profit organization she founded, Ambassador Alliance International. Numerous opportunities include serving in as Worship Pastor at Shady Grove Church, Contracts Management for Raytheon and Small Business Consulting for several years. Today she is a certified Chaplain and licensed Minister and holds certifications in coaching, counseling, chaplaincy and public speaking. She co-wrote a book entitled from Fear to Courage that tells the story of her life choices to move from fear of past abuses into a courageous future.
With a love for all things Texan and a Doctorate degree in Philosophy and Humanities, her greatest joy is being married to Wade and celebrating family life with her adult children and their spouses along with GrandJoy’s Sophia & Dietrich who live in Germany!