Identity Theft

Millions of people are victims of identity theft each year costing millions of dollars. Companies claim they can protect your assets for a nominal fee. But there is an identity theft that is facing every person on the planet today. It costs much more than money.

1 Peter 5:8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

Satan works diligently to strip our identity from us. He starts at an early age with every child. The media is just one of his tools. TV, movies and books display a culture and behavior opposite how our Heavenly Father intended for us to live.
Jesus said He came to give life and give it more abundantly. Popular culture depicts a life pretty on the outside but void of “life”. You can only have “life” through Jesus Christ. All other options are a mirage of the real thing and lead you down a threatening path.

Know who are in Christ.
From youth people are bombarded with lies saying they are worthless, they can’t do anything, they are not as good as someone else. God can never fully forgive you. He is just waiting for you to mess up. You are not pretty or handsome. You focus on all your flaws.
These are lies. Think about all the bad stuff you tell yourself…
This is your true identity: You were born for a reason. God has a purpose and a plan for your life. You are more than a conqueror through Jesus Christ.
You are a child of God. You a wonderfully and fearfully made. God made you for a reason and made you wonderful! You are beautiful! Handsome! You are unique treasure of the Heavenly Father! You are valuable. Period.

Have you ever heard that someone is searching for who they are? That phrase is used as an effort to excuse to describe poor behavior of someone that “hasn’t found themselves”. Humans search for “who they are”. Teenage years are difficult for this reason. “Who am I?”

If we really knew it would shock us, in a good way. Satan does not want humans to ever know or fully realize “who we are in Christ”. If we did the world would be impacted and his kingdom would be desolate. So he uses an ancient strategy of deceit to strip away everything good thing God created us to be. Systematically changing our view of ourselves and thus our view of the world.

Linda Foley, founder of the San Diego-based Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), a non-profit organization that provides education on identity theft and assists identity-theft victims says that thieves “are looking for our weaknesses.”  Foley said, “They take advantage of our apathy.”

Christians have become apathetic. We accept the cultural view of who we are. We accept the lies fed to us all our life. The apathy keep us from diligently searching the truth. The truth of who we  really are.

If Satan works this hard to destroy it could it be something amazing? Could you really be strong, confident, accepted, loved, powerful? Could God really have given you an amazing gift of abundant life found only in Jesus Christ? All you have to do is believe the truth of the Word of God.

Go read you Bible and see what God says about you…

*Psalm 139:13-16   For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

1 Peter 2:9   But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light

Jeremiah 29:11   For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Ephesians 1:4-5   For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will

Ephesians 2:10   For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Psalm 139:1-4   O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.

Colossians 2:13-14   When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross.

John 1:12-13   Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God- children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

Galatians 4:6-7   Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.

1 Samuel 16:7   But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”

John 15:15   I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

Romans 5:1-2   Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.

Colossians 3:12   Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

Galatians 3:26-27   You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.

Psalm 138:8   The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever-do not abandon the works of your hands.

1 Thessalonians 1:4-6   For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.

Romans 8:14-15   because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”

Colossians 3:3-4   For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

Ephesians 2:19   Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household,

1 Thessalonians 5:5   You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness.

Philippians 3:20   But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ,

Hebrews 3:14   We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first.

Matthew 5:13   “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.

2 Corinthians 1:21-22   Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

1 John 3:1   How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.

Matthew 5:14   “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden

1 Corinthians 3:16   Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?

Romans 6:18   You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.

1 John 5:18   We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the one who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him.

2 Corinthians 5:17-21   Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

1 Peter 2:5   you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 2:6   And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus,

 

*There is no condemnation for us (Romans 8:1)

We can never be separated from God’s love (Romans 8:39)

We have wisdom from God (1 Corinthians 1:30)

We are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17)

We become God’s children (Galatians 3:26)

We have every spiritual blessing (Ephesians 1:3)

We have the forgiveness of sins (Ephesians 1:7)

We were also chosen (Ephesians 1:11)

We are for the praise of his glory (Ephesians 1:12)

We’ve been given the incomparable riches of God’s grace (Ephesians 2:7)

We may approach God with freedom and confidence (Ephesians 2:22)

We are light (Ephesians 3:12)

We are holy and faithful (Ephesians 5:8)

Our joy overflows (Philippians 1:26)

*Adapted from John Sachen on Yahoo and Bill Gaultiere at Soul Shepherding.

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Self-Deception Trap

large__5827143430I just read a quote from a man, Jack Deere “If I let out what I was feeling now, I might destroy the self I had worked so long and hard to build.”

Sometimes I can’t put everything I’m thinking into words. That sounds weird because we think in words. Right?

Not exactly, maybe I think in feelings? Not sure.

 

It’s really cool when I read an article or a book that explains exactly what I’m thinking but in words.

After reading the above quote the other day, I then read this article today:

Do You Have Spiritual Blind Spots?
http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-leadership/personal-character/20908-do-you-have-spiritual-blind-spots

He put it best “Spiritual Blind Spots”. We all have these self concepts. I enjoy hearing people describe themselves. Silently, I compare each description to the Word of God and what HE says they are.

You wouldn’t believe the things that we say about ourselves that were never meant for God’s children. And yet we not only accept them but we take ownership of them and brag about them.

Here are common examples. I’m sure you can add many more…

I Can’t

I don’t

I’m not good at…

I was born this way

My parent was this way

It’s just the way it is

That’s life

I’m not loved, or liked

I’m not fun

No one wants to be around me

My sickness/My disease is…

I can never catch a break

I’m not important

People would be better off if I wasn’t here

I’m no good

I’ve done too much wrong

I’m stupid

I deserve bad

Most people don’t say these things too often out loud. But if you listen real close you can hear how they perceive themselves.

Reality and perception are two very different things. Then to complicate it more, spiritual reality (what God says) is very different then physical reality (how we see things).

Here’s a quote “And lest you think I’m being judgmental, let me just say–I’m absolutely convinced that I have spiritual blind spots. I would tell you what they are…but I don’t know them! Sometimes my wife tries to point out my blind spots to me, but she’s always wrong about them–so I’m still not sure! Sometimes my closest staff tries to hint at what’s wrong but they never fully understand!” John Burke

HERE’S YOUR SIGN: He has a great list of signs you may have a self perception problem at the above link.

Now back to the first quote…the self we build…

Over time we build a “self”. It is a hollow shell. Every evil thing that ever befell us. That horrible tragedy, that hurtful word, that terrible experience that we pushed into a very deep, dark part of our “selves”. That part we never talk about because it brings back bad memories or feelings. Since we don’t like to cry because that could make us seem weak, we just grin and bear it. Like it never happened. But it did. Now what.

There is only one solution. Let God deal with it. Yes, as abstract an answer that is it really works.

Let it out, stop pushing it down when it rises up within you. Tell God about it like you are telling your closest friend your deepest, darkest secrets. Let out the cry, let out the yell. Forgive people that did it. Forgive yourself. Repent if needed. And let him heal your wounds.

It’s amazing the scars we carry and we were never intended to. But we believe the lies we tell ourselves. We are a prisoner of our own device when we hold onto it and call it “mine”.

This blog is part of a ministry that helps people with these problems. You are not alone. There is help.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, I can’t do it by myself anymore. I give it to you. Shine your truth into my hurt and pain. Show me your ways. I ask you to heal this wound and tell me your truth about this situation. In Jesus name, Amen

Today, it’s time to start…

Here are some past posts that could help you take this further.

Thoughts Reveal Your Heart

Lesson: Identity 

Identity Theft

 

 

photo credit: ABBones via photopin cc

photo credit: ABBones via photopin cc

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