I've been living in a fairly small town for several years, and while we've had our share of encounters with shady figures here, I've lost my general wariness of humankind that I had developed in big cities. Also, not working 0ut of the home, I've been fairly well protected from wider society with all its various forms of deceit.
In the last two days I have encountered two deceitful characters on the internet and for some reason it has affected me deeply. We have known people who got stung by deceit on singles sites, but I didn't go there, and somehow felt safe.
I have been fairly often participating in a Christian forum. We have been very open with each other, and I trust those women.
I want to keep this blog rated G, but the next paragraphs might be GP.
On Sunday someone briefly visited the forum, purporting to be a Christian woman. However, the id included a word that, from my big city days, I knew to be a code word for illicit behavior, even illegal behavior. I went to her web site,from there to her blog, and from there to her profile. There, gender was stated "Male."
I have compassion on the physically ambiguous, who must choose a gender identity. I have compassion on those who society won't let be themselves. Not all guys are sportsmen. Not all girls frilly. From there, our current society forces questions of gender identity. In college, I had friends who struggled very hard with this.
Later, I had Christian friends who, knowing their gender identity, struggled for celibacy. I salute them. Sure of my own gender, I too struggled with celibacy. God helped us.
That said, I felt somehow cheated that the person on the Christian forum would present herself as a woman, then leave a backtrail as a male. I do not know that person's story. I just feel I have been deceived. She doesn't have to present her story to the public view, but I'd feel better if she were consistent, and chose an id without the illicit codeword.
That one, however, did not trouble me as much as as an encounter on Mon evening on Yahoo!Answers. I've been feeling very pleased with myself, using my knowledge in music, biology, and the Bible to answer questions there. The Religion and Spirituality category had recently attracted me. It's obviously a battleground in the great spiritual warfare that's going on.
There are several who answer there who are better equipped than I, and who compassionately, calmly quote chapter and verse. I like to go through the list of answers and click my approval on the ones I like.
Last night we got a question from one who appeared to be a young Christian with a crippled sister. He even blessed us in the Holy Name. Many compassionate answers were given. Then one person cast doubt on the young man's authenticity. I checked his list of previous answers.
He had responded previously as an atheist and used *** language.
There again, perhaps he is really searching, was mad at God for his family's problem, then had a change of heart and meekly asked our opinion. Experience in the wider world makes me doubt it. It really freaked me out and I almost decided to stay off the internet.
This morning, however, I've recovered some of my trust of people.
God bless us, everyone.