Monday, September 29, 2014

Mistaken Identity

About 15 years ago I sat at home on my lunch break from work while home on summer break from college. I called Appalachian State University (Go Mountaineers!) to find out what the problem was with my schedule for the upcoming fall. I had received a letter in the mail that notified me that I could not take a class I needed because of a conflict. While talking to a woman in the Registrar's office she told me "Mr. Wilson your coach has flagged your schedule because this class conflicts with your practice times." Realizing there was a mistake I told the lady that I wasn't on any teams and it was a mistake. I did ask her what team I had been placed on in the hopes it was the basketball team and I could see about fulfilling a dream to play college basketball. Unfortunately she informed me I had ended up on the football roster and I promptly informed her I was not built for college football. Evidently my student number, name, or social security number had been mistakenly entered into the football roster. One funny aspect of this story is that for the past 15 years I have continued to receive mailings as a "football alumni" and never put on a pair of cleats for ASU. I once received an invite to run onto the field during homecoming, but graciously declined. This past week I received another such letter. It got me thinking about the problem of mistaken identity that can so easily happen in life.

There are plenty of mistaken identities that go on every day when it comes to matters of faith. There are people around the world who claim the name of Christ as their Savior. But their identity with Christ ends right there. They allow Christ to be their fire insurance for hell but give Him no further allegiance or attention. They are mistakenly identified as Christians when they very well may be something else. Now I'm not the one to judge whether a person has given their heart to Christ but you can tell someone's spiritual condition by the fruit they produce. If someone walked an aisle and said a prayer as a kid and never again gave another thought to what God wanted for their life, then I would encourage them to check their own salvation. The premise of being a Christian is one who has allowed Christ to be their Lord and Savior. This means that Christ is in control of their life as much as He has been the one to save their spiritual life. That doesn't mean a Christian is perfect. It doesn't mean a Christian won't backslide or fall away from God. But what it does mean is that they pursue Christ out of a love for what He has done for them. It means they try to grow closer to God by conforming to the image of Christ.

My encouragement to you today is this. If you have fallen away from God take the first step back to Him today. It doesn't matter what you've done, He willingly accepts you back. All you have to do is ask Him for forgiveness and head in a new direction with Him. If you are one of those that walked an aisle and said a prayer but haven't thought twice about God since, I encourage you to contact me so we can talk. Email me at

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