Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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“Are You the Victim of Identity Theft?”
by Tom Goodman
August 3, 2005

I know an identity thief who can damage more than your finances.

We’ve heard about what happens to someone’s credit when one’s identity is stolen.  Due to widespread corporate carelessness, the records of more than forty-six million Americans were lost or stolen in the first half of this year.  Identity thieves have used this information to open credit accounts, leaving the victim to clean up the mess.  Setting the record straight may take years.

But the identity thief I’m talking about wants to damage more than your finances.  We have a spiritual enemy who wants to make us forget who we are in Christ.

Who are you?  In Christ, you are his precious child (Matthew 7:11), you are his representative (2 Corinthians 5:20), you are forgiven (Ephesians 1:7), you are a victorious warrior (1 John 5:4), and the list continues.

We need constant reminders of who we are in Christ, because Satan works hard to strip us of this exalted identity.  That’s why I’ve asked Tierce Green to kick off our back-to-school calendar with a spiritual renewal conference.  He’ll bring his excellent music and his excellent messages to Hillcrest August 14-17.  He’ll lead our morning service at 10:45 a.m., and then he’ll lead us in four nights of spiritual renewal, starting at 7:00 p.m.  Preschool care will be provided.  For more information about my friend Tierce, go to

I know your life is busy, and weeknights are precious.  But that just means that you have to make time for spiritual renewal because you’ll never have time for it!

Besides, if Satan is at work to steal your identity, then you should be suspicious of any inner voice that justifies missing a conference about that subject!  So, start praying and planning now so that August 14-17 will be a mountaintop experience for you and your church family.

Tierce joins us next Sunday, August 14.  This Sunday, August 7, we’ll conclude our year-long look at the I.N.V.I.T.E. Evangelism Strategy that Herb and Jim and I developed.  You would be surprised at how many pastors have asked us to send them the teaching material for this strategy.  For now, though, it’s just for Hillcrest.  Come learn how to “invite your world to life” this week!

One more thing:  We need your help updating our church records.  We have invalid addresses on a number of our members.  Please check the list at:

If you know of how we can contact any of these people, please email ( or call (345-3771) our office staff (Patty, Melanie, Jami, or Betty).


P.S.  Our youth praise band did an excellent job this past week!  Several of you have been asking if and when we plan to start a second service that is “contemporary” in format.  I addressed that subject in last week’s LeaderLines, our e-newsletter for those who serve in leadership at Hillcrest.  If you want to see what I wrote them, go to…

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