August 11, 2014

A few years back, I went on to my first manly men’s canoe trip, which, thanks to Brian Jones and his asking (knowing that the outdoors to me equates to a hotel) me to tag along. There was a point where several of the guys were climbing up this small cliff and diving into the water. I remember Brian trying to get me to jump off, and I laughed and told him that I thought that it was funny that he thought his words would actually get me to jump.

In the same way, life’s hiccups and irritations can also be a consideration as to whether or not we’re going to jump off and away from the peace that passes all understanding/the joy of the Lord. And so, I found myself this morning with a weed eater on a familiar hill and just started smiling and then laughing because of last night. I got to watch my dear friends, as well as my youngest sons, attend their (Sam and Cole’s) first Christian concert. Sam was completely enthralled, his eyes could not be distracted, and at one point, during a biblical share from the lead singer of “Break the fall,” I saw tears streaming down his face. When we asked how he was then and afterward, he grew excited and got autographs from the whole band.

I needed that moment last night; you probably don’t understand that, but, as parents, we don’t always get the door opened to see vulnerability in our kids, and it was awesome. But it doesn’t end there because I got to renew a covenant with the Lord last night and am embracing as much worship as my 47-year-old arms can raise, and it gives me perspective, which is what I need. Perspective looks past the pains and the perceived interferences in life; it slows down and enjoys the moment.

Who We are in Christ – Is our identity found in what we have or what others say about us?

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

No matter what my kids will ever do, or not do, I will always love them. They are forever connected to me; my heart, soul, and mind. Emotions are intertwined within all four of them. I will, Lord willing, always remember their high-pitched voices, the little sayings they made on the playground or to strangers in a grocery store. (Chloe) But, no matter what, my love for them cannot be extinguished.

If that’s true of an earthly father, how much does it resonate with our heavenly Father? Our heavenly Father isn’t just loving. He’s the very definition of love. Therefore, my Creator, the author, and finisher of my faith, the beginning, and the end, Alpha and Omega, has a perspective, a viewpoint, a notion, a perspective on who I am in Him. He has a perspective that is unrivaled in any other capacity/viewpoint/opinion, even above my earthly parents.

Therefore, just for today, I choose to believe the words and the wisdom that comes from trusting my heavenly Father on my worst day in Him; when I’ve gripped the steering wheel of my life with white knuckles and have felt so negative as to tire of my own self-talk. To reiterate,” You who are in Christ are not condemned, and since He knows us so well, He includes a verse like 1 John 3; 20 just to amplify this fact during times of crisis or excessive need:

“For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.”