On my way to work, I often hear on the radio offers of identity theft protection from outfits like "Life-L..." and "My-Iden..." which tout their ability to discover and monitor such fraud and to help repair any damage done by identity thieves. For a regular fee, of course.
Identity theft is perpetrated by people motivated by dishonesty and greed, those who can access our private information either technologically or otherwise. They all cause serious injustice and injury to their hapless victims. But whether such outfits can really make good on their promises is at least doubtful.
I know a friend of mine who suffered substantial financial losses and in the process emotional effects from theft of his identity information.
Our identity is something that we alone own and, obviously, we need to value and protect it with all care and vigor.
Our identity is who we are. It distinguishes us from any other member of the human family.
Who am I really? What is my identity?
We have many other identities brought about by our relationships that occur to us in time, but our core identity is who we are as a specific individual creation of God, made in His image and likeness, with inborn qualities and potentials, and a mission to work and achieve.
This core identity is what we need to protect and nurture at all costs. While it cannot really be stolen by anyone, there are forces that may hinder us from our efforts to be true to that identity, to live that identity as given to us at our creation and at our Baptism, and to develop it to its fullest potential until the mission is accomplished.
The world, the flesh and the devil -- these are the enemies we must engage in spiritual warfare. These are the tempters. These are the thieves that aim to strike at our identities as children of God, derail us from our mission as God's children, and shatter our identity as members of God's kingdom, here and in the next. If we succumb to their wiles and their and false attractions, we ourselves choose to abandon our identity. They are called sin.
We must fight these thieves "tooth and nail" to protect our identity. Our effective weapon is God's grace, which is free for the asking.
But we must ask for it. Truly ask for it.
With God constantly with us, the identity thieves and destroyers in our lives will not succeed.#
"Beloved, we are God’s children now; it does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is." (1 John 3:2)
"And you he made alive, when you were dead through the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience. Among these we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of body and mind . . . But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with him . . ." (Ephesians 2:2-7)