I’m going to make a confession. Every now and again I like to shop. Not buy. Shop. Look around. Get ideas. Become inspired. One of my favorite places to do this is Target. I like to go. My husband John, however, does not—not even a little bit.
So, imagine my surprise last month when I received a bill in the mail from Target in John’s name for charges made from a shopping spree of men’s clothing. Say, what? The husband I know does not go on shopping sprees for clothes, let alone go into Target or possess a store credit card. When I called the charge card folks about this to let them know, I learned that the credit card had been opened in person, that a driver’s license had been used, and that the person had also supplied John’s social security number. Oy. We now had a bigger problem than a secret Target obsession being revealed. We had identity theft.
Identity theft is on the rise in crazy proportions. It is a real problem. Spiritually, it is an even bigger problem.
Friends, Satan’s #1 tool against us is identity theft.
The battle rages. Our lives are opposed. But you already knew that. Still, there are such moments of beauty, we can get lured into thinking that life is only about beauty—that life is meant only to be fabulous, simple and lovely. It is so easy, too easy to forget that all around us—every moment—a battle is going on. We were born into a world at war. The prize is the human heart.
Let me say it again: The primary assault on our feminine hearts comes in the form of identity theft.
In order to stand firm against the enemy’s endless accusations against us, we have to know who we are. In order for us to offer what we are meant to offer, we have to know who we are. In order for us not to be taken out in the battle that surrounds us—you guessed it—we have to know who we are.
First, we are the property of the Lord Jesus Christ. We have been bought with a price. We are not our own. We belong to God. We are members of the family of the King. We have been grafted in.
1 John 3:1 says, “Behold what manner of love the Father has lavished upon us that we should be called children of God, and such we are.”
We can unabashedly and fearlessly run into the arms of our Father. We are welcomed and wanted. Our place in our God’s heart is secure. We are not second-class citizens or simply just “lucky to be here outsiders” in the family. No, we have been adopted. We are granted all the rights, the favors, and the legality of being daughters.
“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” Romans 8:15-16 (NIV)
The readers and listeners at the time the Scriptures were written would have understood better than most of us the privileges of adoption.
In Roman laws, when a transaction was done through adoption from one family to another, the judge would take a damp cloth and wipe the parchment record of the old life of the one being adopted into the new family. When they wiped the parchment with the cloth, the name and all it contained was completely obliterated and made totally clean. All their past life ceased to exist. In court, any information about the person’s old life was cancelled and could not be recalled again.
“The old has gone. The new has come.” 2 Cor 5:17
With that reality in mind, let me remind you who you truly now are.
As a child of the living God, you are no longer defined by your past, your wounds or your sins. Your identity is not based on your failures but on the finished work of Christ. We all are his innocent, chosen daughters, beautiful in his sight.
You were chosen before the foundations of the earth to be holy. You are loved beyond telling. You are the beloved of Jesus, the bride of Christ, the prize of Heaven. You are the beauty of the Kingdom. You are Christ’s ambassador. You are bringing the kingdom of God with you wherever you go. You are utterly captivating. And you are hated—by one that Jesus has conquered, defeated, and disarmed and you have authority over him.
The victory has been won. You can rest in what God has accomplished for you and from that place of victory, you have everything you need to stand firm, resist the devil and enforce the Truth.
Press in, beloved of God. Dive into the reality and marinate in the truth of who you are in Christ. You are—you are only—who the King of kings says you are.
Staci Eldredge’s message in Captivating is that your heart matters more than anything else in all creation. Some of Staci’s best takeaways are:
- Learn how to guard the most important thing about you…your heart.
- Find courage to walk away from the ways we live out of fear.
- Let God tenderly open our wounds to set us free.
- Fight the right enemy. And it’s not men. And it’s not women.
- Possess a beauty that is worth pursuing.
- Our wounds reveal what we are meant to bring to the world.
Stasi Eldredge is a New York Times bestselling author, and her books have sold nearly 3 million copies and changed women’s lives all over the world. A teacher and conference speaker, Stasi is the director of the women’s ministry at Wild at Heart, a ministry devoted to helping people discover the heart of God, recover their own hearts in God’s love, and learn to live in God’s kingdom. Her passion is to see lives transformed by the beauty of the gospel. She and her husband, John, make their home in Colorado Springs, Colorado.