For many years I maintained confidence in my personal identity. I knew exactly who I was and was quite comfortable in my skin. Although, I must confess my skin used to fit me better than it does these days.
Recently several things happened to shake this confidence in my person. I don’t know about anyone else, but I take pride in my personal mettle.
About two months ago my credit card company informed me somebody hacked into their records and stole my identity, along with approximately one million other customers. They went on to assure me that my account would be safe.
It wasn’t my money I was worried about at the time but my identity. How can anybody steal someone else’s identity?
More important than that, why would anybody want to steal somebody else’s identity? Especially somebody like me.
In thinking about this I wondered, how much can I charge someone for borrowing my identity? I might have a cottage industry here in the making. Or, perhaps it’s just cottage cheese.
I could understand if I were a good looking, rich tycoon with more dollars than sense. I’ve been looking for money all my life and have been unsuccessful. I am so poor some church mice have loaned me a dollar or two over the years. And if I ever see those mice again I aim to repay those loans.
The way I feel about it is if anyone can get money out of my account, good luck to them, because I can never get money out of my account when I need it. In fact, I have a good mind to find these identity thieves and ask how they’re getting money out of my account.
I’d pay good money to find the secret to that puzzle.
The ATM at my bank stands for Automatic Thief Machine. It holds me up from getting to my next appointment with cash and never returns my card.
A second incident furthered my identity malaise. A few days ago, the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and Yours Truly were in a little bit of a tight spot. Actually, it was I in the tight spot, which is nothing new for me.
I can’t remember the events leading up to the spot I found myself but my wife looked at me, placed both hands on her hips and declaimed, “Who do you think you are?”
At the time, I did not know quite how to answer that philosophical inquiry. I mean, she has known me for over 35 years ,and for her not to know who I am at this point is just a little bit puzzling to me.
At the time, I must confess, I was a little confused about who she thought she was. Being the gentleman I am, I kept my befuddlement to myself.
My selfhood perplexity deepened. One day this week, I was going about minding my own business n which is a full-time job with part-time pay and no benefits n when I bumped into an old friend. After we exchanged a few pleasantries, he looked at me and said, “Is there anything wrong? You don’t look yourself today.”
Now, the question plaguing my mind was simply, if I don’t look like me, who in the world do I look like?
I simply smiled and mumbled something to the effect that recently somebody had stolen my identity. Frankly, I was surprised someone noticed it.
In thinking about this, I wondered when someone’s identity is lost where does it go? Is there a lost and found department somewhere for lost identities?
Then an awful thought tugged at my mind. What if someone lost their identity, went to the lost and found department and, by mistake, picked up someone else’s lost identity?
How do I know it hasn’t happened to me? What proof do I have that I am who I say I am?
The evidence before me is quite overwhelming. A major corporation in the United States has informed me that someone has stolen my identity; my wife asked me who do I think I am; and a friend I’ve known for years tells me I don’t look like myself.
Talk about having your reality check bounce.
I must confess to times when my mind does wander a trifle. But I refuse to accept the judgment that I am absent-minded. I grant you my mind, on the odd occasion, does take a little break every now and then, but it is never absent.
This recent identity crisis caused me to do a little evaluating about my personhood. Who am I really? I jotted down a few notes: son, brother, uncle, husband, father and grandfather.
Although I’m not old enough to be a grandfather, I do accept the privileges of this position. After all, I’m living with a grandmother, so it is easier just to go along with the program, if you know what I mean.
Then a marvelous thought poked its way into my mind. How it got in with all the clutter is beyond me.
The thought was simply this; I am also a son of God. This is based upon a wonderful verse of scripture. “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” (John 1:12 KJV.)
I’m unsure about many things, but one thing I am confident in is my relationship to God.