I was thinking about the question I posed last post, "What Bible character are you most like?"
I was reading you answers and rethinking my own, when I remembered something that happened 5 years ago. We were in the process of securing a loan to buy our house.
"Pamela, Its Jeff. I just got the credit report my friend did on you and Mike regarding the house loan. Your combined numbers are great. I don't think we will have any problem getting the loan...but I do have some questions concerning your credit."
"It seems that you have three credit cards in your name that are close to being maxed out. It says you are paying in good standing..."
"Jeff, there has to be a mistake. I have no credit cards in my name."
"Here let me give you the numbers of these cards. You need to call right away. Don't worry its probably a simple mistake...a typo or something. I doubt it is identity theft."
It was identity theft. Someone in a nearby state, who had my same first, last and middle name had used my social security number to open three credit cards. She was paying on the credit cards, but they were close to being maxed out and only she and God knows what she would have done then. It took almost a year to get everything straightened out. If you have ever been through anything similar, you know the elaborate maze of twists and turns I'm talking about. The physical puzzle of being able to clear my name became an endless labyrinth of distorted mirrors. Every turn not only had to be negotiated in the physical world but in the spiritual world as well. As a follower of Christ, each pathway required that I balance upon the rocks of forgiveness, why me's, and faith that my name would finally be cleared. It was not so much a question of "What would Jesus do?" I knew the answer. Living it was the hard part!
I had worked so hard to always have a good credit for 26 years! This person didn't steal my money. She stole my good name! She was using my name to receive the good credit that she had not earned! Forgiving that kind of theft was hard. I remember crying out to God in my frustration and indignation!
"It was not her name! She has taken my name! The name I earned, I deserved, and misused it for her own selfish use! How can I forgive her for that!"
Finally in the quietness as I sat fuming, that still soft whisper which my heart recognized as that of my Lord said, "I forgive you and you misuse My Name everyday."
I fell straight to my knees. As a Christian I carry the name of Jesus. I did not steal it but He gave it to me. I misuse His name every time I fuss at another driver (One of my weaknesses please pray for me about that one), every time I am grouchy, or lazy, or just thoughtless. I misuse His name when I don't see the needs of those before me, because I am caught up in my on schedule of activities. I misuse His name everyday. Yet everyday, He allows me to be called by His name, that wonderful name. I have cart blanch with the name of Jesus.
I've changed my mind I don't want to be more like Mary. I want to be more like Jesus!