“Congratulations on turning 65!”
I stared in disbelief at the letter I had just received from a life insurance company. I looked at the envelope again. Yup, it was addressed to me. Sixty-five? That’s decades away! I laughed and tossed the letter in the trash.
A few weeks later, I got an invitation to an informational dinner hosted by an assisted living community. Then came another letter regarding my supposed upcoming 65th birthday. Each piece of correspondence was from a different source. What seemed at first like a crazy fluke began to hoist proverbial “red flags” in my mind.
Has someone stolen my identity?
Then I looked more closely at the intended recipient – it was addressed to me, but with my maiden name. Memories crashed into my mind like a flash flood. About fifteen years ago, when I was single, my identity was stolen. It took months to unravel the mess and clear my name. I wonder, could this senior citizen mistake be somehow related?
Protecting one’s identity is of great importance, and mine was in question.
In the spiritual realm, a similar crisis exists for every single believer. Our enemy, called “the accuser” in Revelation 12:10, is constantly telling us lies about our identity. He wants us to believe that we aren’t really that different from our old selves apart from Christ.
He loves to remind us of past sins – or even of present sin struggles. His web of deception can easily entangle us if we believe his lies.
Just as I am neither 65 nor single, I am also not the same person I was without Jesus – and neither are you, fellow Jesus-lover. When the Holy Spirit takes up residence in a believer:
- He breathes life into a formerly dead spirit.
- He breaks the chains of addictive sin.
- He adopts us into His family and calls us beloved.
- He forgives every sin and cancels the record of charges against us.
- He makes us more than conquerors
- He begins a transforming work that He will be faithful to complete.
God defines our identity – not the accuser, not other people, not our feelings, not our circumstances.
Much is at stake here. For just as identity theft damages its victims, so we will miss the riches of God’s work in us if we believe Satan’s lies about our identity.
Victorious Christian living and intimacy with Christ hinge upon knowing and believing the truth. And when we know this truth, astounding freedom will be our reality (John 8:32).
Now it’s your turn! What lies have you believed about your identity? What aspects of your new identity in Christ are most exciting to you? Please join the conversation!