Notes from Pastor Chris
Are you a child of God or an employee? Romans 8:14-16 says, “…those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” These incredible verses reveal some staggering truths. First, of all it reveals our identity as children of God. So often in life we approach God more like an employee. We recognize that we are valued, but we feel like there are expectations to fulfill in order to get our due. To fail is to reap the consequences or even get fired.”
I recently ran across a man who grew up in a Christian home. He knew he was loved as his parents repeatedly told him so. However, he often felt that performance was the primary factor in gaining affection from his parents. He often heard, “We love you but….”. What followed the ‘but’ was always performance oriented, “be more aggressive on the court, get better grades, etc.” It was love plus some requirement. Do you see your relationship with God this way? As a Father yelling ‘encouragement’ from the sidelines? The Holy Spirit is here to say to you today, “I love you, period.” He loves us as we are, not for what we do. We are loved unconditionally by the God that takes up permanent residence in our very hearts.
This love for us is deep and intimate. As children of God we are able to experience the Father in ways never imagined in the centuries leading up to Jesus. To call God ‘Abba’, is more like saying Papa or Daddy. Picture a little girl on her father’s lap, crying out to her Daddy. What an incredible love a father can show his precious little girl, and what boundless trust a little girl can have in her Daddy! It is through the Holy Spirit that we may hear these words from the Father, “You are mine, and you will be by child forever!”