The Age Long Query, Who Am I?
by James Snyder
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Last week I was tootling along without a care in the world. Actually, I did have several cares but I was ignoring them as much as possible. My basic philosophy is this, the more you ignore something the less you have to deal with it. This, however, does not apply to the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage.
Experience has taught me one lesson concerning women, especially wives. They will not stand to be ignored, particularly by their husbands. I have learned the less attention I pay to my wife the more I pay in other areas of life, if you know what I mean.
So, ignoring the cares I had last week, I was caught off guard when I received a letter from my credit card company. This was no friendly, "how are you," kind of a letter. Nor was it a cheery birthday greeting. I cannot tell you how many times I have reminded them of my birthday but to date they have not picked up on my hint.
The ominous letter I did receive informed me that along with millions of other customers my identity had been stolen. The letter went on to assure me I had nothing to worry about and they had the situation well in hand.
That is easy for them to say. They know who they are but what about me? When I got the letter I ran to my bathroom and looking into my mirror – nothing! My identity was indeed gone.
I assure you I will worry until I get to the bottom of this. I will not rest until I know exactly who I am and my identity is fully restored. Of course, there is one problem here. What if when I do recover my identity I don’t like myself? Can I exchange it or get my money back?
For some reason the personal information of millions of people had been lost or stolen from the security of my credit card company, which begs the question, how secured is my personal information?
While I am in the begging mood, another question comes to mind. If someone has stolen my identity, who in the world am I? And, how do I reclaim my identity?
As a young person whenever my mother was upset with me about something I had done or did not do, she would always look at me and ask, "Who do you think you are?"
If anybody in the world should know who I am it would be my mother. And if she he was wrestling with the same question I was wrestling with, how in the world could I ever come to grips with my personal identity?
It is hard enough discovering who you are without somebody casting dispersions upon that very thing. Perhaps my mother and I could work together in solving this problem. After all, two heads are better than one, unless one does not know who he is.
I have spent years trying to find myself. Once I thought I found myself but it turned out to be an old pair of socks I lost three years prior.
My problem is compounded by this one thing, I did not really know who I was before my identity was stolen. I had my suspicions, of course. However, somewhere in the back of my mind, I really could not come to grips with who I really was in this world.
In the course of time, (actually it was a four-course lunch) I have come to several conclusions.
First, I am a man. What kind of a man, is anyone's guess this point. The truth is that at the root of everything I am, I am a man.
Second, I am a husband. This, of course, is the most baffling of my identity. What it means to be a husband differs from wife to wife. Fortunately, for me, I have only one wife, but even her idea of a husband changes from one moment to the next. I am never sure what she expects of me as a husband. Once I thought I had it all figured out but someone, I am not mentioning any names, changed the rules.
Third, I am a father. As a father, my role consists of bankrolling the childhood adventures of my children; financing their higher education career, hoping they get married before my money runs out. To this day, I am not sure if I made it or not.
Fourth, I am a grandfather. This is the most well defined role I have. The great thing about being a grandfather is, nobody expects much from us. Our role is covertly to help our grandchildren make the lives of their parents as tempestuous as possible. Revenge is sweet when laced with jellybeans. Sugar highs are a grandfather’s best retaliation.
The most important thing about my identity quest is, I am a Christian. This undergirds everything else I may or may not be. My Christianity is the foundation upon which everything else is built.
I take comfort in the Bible; "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God." (1 John 5:13 KJV).
When my identity is rooted in believing in Jesus Christ, everything else in my life falls into place.
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