A few years ago, my identity was stolen. Yep. It happened on a busy morning at the church I was working at. I went across the hall from my office, leaving the door slightly open. A thief, who had planned to come through the building and steal whatever was possible, reached in and took my bag, which had my driver’s license, social security card, health insurance information, work records, car and house keys . . . everything. A young woman saw what happened, and sprinted after the thief in her six inch heels; however, the get-away-car was parked at the curb. They got away with it all. The police came and filed the report. It was a long day, changing our car and home locks and making the calls to report the theft.
Initially, nothing seemed to come from it. After a couple of years, I forgot about it. Until. I went to a new doctor in Portland. I walked up to the receptionist desk, giving them my name. And, a conversation ensued that made it clear someone else was using my name and had assumed my identity.
“Has your information changed since you were last here?”
“I’ve never been here before.”
“We have your file.”
“I have never been here before.”
The receptionist held up a folder stuffed with papers.
“Nope, it’s not me.”
Is your name . . . yes.
Is your birthday . . . yes.
Is your social security number . . . it’s off by one number.
Is your address . . . no.
Are you African-American . . . no.
Seriously? I said I had not been there; however, they did not believe me because my name was on their records.
This conversation was repeated when I went to have x-rays.
The power and authority of our name is weakened when it’s stolen, compromising how we are known, perceived, and even trusted.
We are known by our name. Think about what comes to mind when a name is mentioned: Abraham Lincoln . . . William Shakespeare . . . Oprah Winfrey . . . Walt Disney . . . John F. Kennedy and Jackie Kennedy . . . Kobe Bryant . . . and, yes, I must drop one of the biggest names of the football season . . . Tim Tebow.
Our name identifies us, giving us authority and power, for good or evil. There is one name, above all names, a name of authority and power.
The Apostle Paul wrote about the name to the Early Church at Philippi:
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:9-11, NIV).
The name above all names identifies those of us who are Christ followers, the name which gives us power and authority to live beyond the stuff of life, to make a difference in this world with and for Him. But. We need to be cautious and careful to keep the door of our life closed, so, the thief, the enemy of our soul, does not have an opportunity to take away Christ’s issued power and authority in our life.
Jesus said: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10, NLT).
When we leave the door open to the thief of life, bitterness, hatred, gossip, hopelessness, compromise, and other things of the darkness find their way in, taking away a portion of the full life we are promised through the authority and power of Christ.
The thing is . . . we are made to live a full life . . . to walk in the authority and power of Christ, to anticipate what is ahead, to experience the possible in the impossible, to see a dead-end become a new beginning, to believe all things will work together for good, and to celebrate the gift of the day.
Put it on the life list . . .
Live in the power and authority of Jesus’ name.
- Remember Jesus has issued this day for you to live a full life.
- Refuse to let the door open for the thief of life to take what belongs to you.
- Regardless of situations, be confident that nothing and no one will harm you.
- Renew your commitment to walk in the power and authority of Jesus’ name, celebrating the gift of the day.
Learning to Kickstart the day in the power and authority of Jesus’ name,
(written by Kerrie Carlisle Palmer © 2012 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED)