So, what are you?
I was frequently asked this question growing up. As a Filipino-American with an immigrant father and a fair-haired, caucasian mother, I did not really look any one particular ethnicity. Some days I look more Asian, other days I look Hispanic, other days Mediterranean, sometimes Eastern European, and some days, none of the above. Just a mix of who knows what.
Coming to terms with my ethnic identity has always been a struggle. I did not feel part of a particular group growing up and often felt like an outsider in my suburban hometown. But these days, I call myself a typical California girl who loves Filipino food and my large and loud extended family. But it makes me think of my identity—that what am I? tug pulls me in different directions.
What am I?
I’m a Southern California native. I’m a mother and wife. I’m a dentist and professional. I’m a friend and confidant. I’m a nose-wiper and diaper-changer. I’m an ice cream enthusiast and compulsive organizer. I’m an extroverted introvert. I’m a sister, a niece, a daughter, an aunt.
But, who am I?
In his letters, Saint Paul introduces himself not as what he is, but who he is. He doesn’t say, "Hey, I’m Paul, lover of desert foliage and fine wine that was recently water." He exclaims outright, "Paul, called to be an Apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God." (1 Corinthians 1:1)
He knows who he is. Every previous identifier has been stripped away, revealing the truest identity of all—Apostle of Christ Jesus! In his very soul, his identity is rooted in the one Who saves. Paul praises the name of God with every breath he takes.
So today, I’m Samantha, daughter of the King, lover of Jesus, still being saved by our Lord, and disciple of God. Nice to meet you.
Who are you?
Dr. Samantha Aguinaldo-Wetterholm is a wife to Paul, mom to two little ones, and practices dentistry at a public health community center for low income families in the Bay Area, California. She (unashamedly) thinks ice cream is its own food group, loves anything Harry Potter, does not leave the house without wearing sparkly earrings, and is an enthusiastic proponent of the Oxford comma. Find out more about her here.