Summary: Father, adoption, faith, feeling
CHILDREN OF GOD
Matt 6:9 (678) May 12, 2013
One of the hazards of working with me is that I will try with all my heart to make you one of the family…by that I mean, when I work alongside you or oversee you on a regular basis I will seek to have a family type relationship…. I’ll view you as my son in the faith, or daughter, brother…or father, mother, sister…etc…You get what I’m saying…Most of the time its reciprocated…on some level.
LuAnn is my office manager and sister in Christ… (Older sister, but sister none-the less). (LOL) it’s like a year…Steve her husband is our facility engineer…I like that, he takes care of the building daily…He is one of my best friends…they have adopted a little girl named Peyton…She’s brought a joy to Steve & LuAnn’s life that is overflowing…
But let me caution you if you see Steve with Peyton or Luann with Peyton...don’t ask either of them if they have “children of their own”
Because I’m going to tell you…Peyton is theirs…yes she’s adopted, but Luann is her “real” mother and Steve is her “real” father…just as real as they are to Chris and Amanda…And you might say “yeah, yeah but you know what I mean?!!!
And I’ll respond, “Yeah and here’s what I mean…Peyton isn’t part Johnson, half Johnson...kind Johnson…she is fully Johnson.
She’s gonna grow up knowing what deer meat tastes like…(If Steve ever kills a deer) She’s gonna want to be a ballerina like her sister Amanda…Peyton will grow up listening to Chris Tomlin and Aerosmith because Peyton is Steve and LuAnn’s daughter. I’ve known Steve and LuAnn for almost a decade and a half…..I’ve been on more short time mission trips with Steve than I can recall…and LuAnn is involved in my ministry almost every day. I’ve seen them experience joy on many levels, but one of the most joyous occasions was this (Show Picture of signing day)
It’s the day Peyton became officially a Johnson…A judge declared it and signed it into being, but Peyton’s life is based on her relationship with her family every single day…as she plays princess tea party…the ballerina, the future deer hunter…
This picture of joy is an earthly adoption gives us just a small glimpse on this Mother’s Day into a far greater joy found in Heavenly adoption. Without a doubt our status before God was settled the moment we repented of our sin and surrendered completely to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…But our lives are based on the love relationship we have every day with God our Father…He showers His children with affection…This relationship is visible, tangible, real, and powerful...you do not have this because you prayed a prayer…or got baptized to complete a duty…
The Christian life is about us following Jesus as God’s sons and daughters. When we follow Jesus in a relationship like this with the Father as sons and daughters we experience a desire for Him and pleasure in Him that totally transforms everything about us….When God the Father draws “Near to Us” that relationship changes everything!!!
You see many individuals still live as God’s servant when in reality He wants us as His son.
I A SON OR A SERVANT
Pray like Jesus taught His followers in the sermon on the Mt….”Our Father In Heaven”
Do you think Matthew 6:9 is a mistake? This is the first time in all of scripture anyone is encouraged to pray to God as Father.
In fact in the Old Testament God is only addressed as Father 15 times. He’s called numerous majestic titles, but Father only 15…However when we come to the gospels, the first 4 books of the New Testament God is described as “Father” 165 different times…all but 1 of them occur where Jesus is specifically teaching His disciples.
Followers of Jesus have the privilege of knowing, worshipping, talking to, and relating to God as “Our Father”.
J.T. Parker in the book “Knowing God” says that viewing God as our Father is central to understanding the Christian life…He writes…
What is a Christian? The question can be answered in many ways, but the richest
answer I know is that a Christian is one who has God as Father…If you want to
judge how well a person understands Christianity, find out how much he makes of the
thought of being God’s child, and having God as His Father. If this is not the
thought that prompts and controls his worship and prayers and his whole outlook on
life, it means that he does not understand Christianity very well at all.
Or He may not be a Christian at all!
[John Wesley, one of the most influential preachers and leaders of the 18th century…He grew up in a Christian home…lived what looked to be an exemplary Christian life. He graduated with honors from Oxford University…became an ordained Pastor in the Church of England and regularly ministered in the prisons and slums of London. He was an avid student of the Bible….He prayed regularly…fasted….attended multiple worship services on Sunday and throughout the week. He even went to the British Colony of Georgia as a missionary to the Native Americans who lived there…yet when Wesley returned to England he confessed in his journal that he wasn’t a Christian at all. He wrote “I who went to America to convert others was never myself converted to God.”…you might wonder….”How can you do all that and yet not be a Christian.” Here’s what Wesley wrote “I had even then the faith of a servant, though not of a Son”.