Occasionally when I log into a site that I regularly visit, I am requested to enter a password. I immediately experience all kinds of anxiety because it is difficult for me to recall all the various passwords that I’ve created. This becomes even more complicated as I’m prompted to change my password typically within an average of every three months. With all the data flying around in my head, I often feel frustrated because I’m denied access to my own stuff, my own data. However, even when I am experiencing “access denied” there are others who’ve got the right combination to access parts of my person without my approval. And that is dangerous. That my friend is a security breach.
Take for example, the concept of a password. It was actually created for the benefit of the user. It is for security purposes. It is designed to safeguard the protection of one’s identity. When we fail to change our password, a hacker has access to our data without our knowledge for a period of time. A password provides access to one particular set of data, however, when the same password is used in multiple places, that practice may impact one’s overall security. When someone has access to our makeup, they can use it to their advantage without our knowledge and/or permission. Often in our attempt to share parts of ourselves, our testimony with others as a method of encouragement, we may find in fact that they have elected not to use it as a means of support, but instead as a means of depletion. Instead of using it to bolster their own case, they drain you, pulling from the investment you’ve made in your faith as opposed to opening their own account in the bank of Christ. Recently, my daughter’s checking account was compromised. Someone accessed her account and began using her card to make purchases. Thankfully, her account has theft protection and it kicked in to put a hold on the account. Sure, it was a bit inconvenient, but it would have been more detrimental if the hold was not placed.
I am listed on my daughter’s account and have authorized access. Who have we allowed authorized access to us so much so that they’ve used their access inappropriately? During the process to gain access to what was “ours” we were asked a series of questions. The answers were predetermined when we opened the account. When we’ve been compromised, we must revert to our internal questions and considerations. When we walk blindly with people, as opposed to God, we run the risk of making ourselves vulnerable for anyone’s utility. They will drain us as did the person with my daughter’s account. When we are tired, unmotivated, heavy, we must check ourselves. Its likely that we’ve been hacked without knowledge. When we come to the realization, what is our determined method for recovery? How might we envision restoring balance? What methods might we employ to deposit back into our reserve to continue in our purpose? What security measures should we enact as to not end up in a similar space again? In retrospect, have we allowed someone access to more and longer than the three month rule that is followed in security practice?
We must make adjustments to our domain. We can’t share everything with everyone. In fact, even when we do as a method of providing assistance, we can be disturbed when our private stock is not valued or appreciated. Hackers are immediate. They don’t hang around to study you and slowly drain you. Nope. They are cunning and as soon as they have access they will transfer your goods swiftly. Before you know it, you are experiencing a heaviness in your spirit that appears to be untraceable. We must create our internal blocking so that when faced with the hacker again, your security breach measures are on point. We gain our best practices through prayer, through the Word, through our praise and worship. While the regimen may remain the same, we must seek God through distinct prayers, through diverse scriptures and through dynamic praise and worship experiences. Again, just as we change our passwords, we’ve got to change our interactions and encounters with God as we walk out this faith for the complexity we will encounter.
The great thing about God is that anyone who desires may have access – but let’s be honest, everyone doesn’t desire a personalized approach, they would rather seek him through you. That’s called phishing and its performed by those who often present themselves as a member of the organization; or in the spiritual, a member in the body of Christ. In the natural, I typically receive an invitation from a phisher every few months on my job via email. On the surface, they appear to have the right goods, yet upon closer examination, there are grammar and spelling errors, incorrect websites to open, and the like. In the spiritual context, are you able to identify phishers? Do they appear to present themselves as trustworthy? Do they talk the game, but when it comes to walking the talk they fail? Are they self presenting as saintly or scamming?
We must create mechanisms to safeguard what God has poured into us. We should be prepared to encourage others through Christ (Psalm 46:1-3; John 16:33; Isaiah 41:10). And yet, there is a personalized security detail that God has outlined for every person who desires to have relationship with him (Jeremiah 29:11; 1 John 1:9; 1 Timothy 6:12-16). Sisters and brothers, we must each seek God for ourselves. Accessing each other’s testimony, prayer and supplication will only work temporarily. We must each create a unique, identifiable relationship with the Creator and trust him to walk this journey out individually. God is the single most security for every breach we encounter.