We were designed to have a close fellowship with God every day, spirit to spirit. Then one day, satan told humans that they don’t have to be that tight with God, and that they can determine their own good and evil. Humans gave that a try, and some pretty major stuff hit the big fan.
Today, God is again inviting us for close fellowship with him, daily. He loves to see his children secure, happy, and fulfilled. However, most of us have been fed on a steady diet of shame, guilt, and fear. We steadfastly refuse the fact that God’s heart desire is to restore the former glory back to us:
22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
Only after we realize that Jesus came to give us back God’s glory, can we be secure enough in our identity that we would come together as the body of Christ in full unity. And only then the world will know that God has sent Jesus, and loves them no less that he loves his own son Jesus.
We need to realize that we are fully adopted, that we are member’s of God’s family once and for all, never to be rejected, never to be begging again for daily bread. We have full room and board with our Daddy God, who is not lacking for any resources.
The problem is that our orphan mentality can’t stand the goodness of God, it screams for familiar motivators – fear, shame, guilt, rejection, pain, punishment. If there are instruments of torture that demons ever use on humans, they have to be it!
Envy. A bevy of bright rising stars,
Lighting the fathomless quantum horizon
Of human achievement, slowly extinguished
In old rusty pails gurgling with venom.
Anger. A rousing adrenaline rush.
Limp, lifeless bodies forlornly hanging
From white-knuckled grips, instinctively clenched
Over intelligent, elegant necks.
Hatred. Blood streaks on establishment walls.
Fragments of beautiful ivory skulls
Pricking well-groomed aristocratic feet
Of playmakers’ sensibilities.
Judgment. The molesting father of all,
The ancient vampire of withered love stories.
Sucking its victims to pale sickly shadows,
While masquerading as their daddy.
Unquenchable lust for pain, shock, and awe
Of being the judge, and of laying the law.
4 April 2016
We steadfastly refuse to believe in our full adoption into God’s family. We would rather beg for crumbs from the Master’s table than be put in charge of the Master’s household. We just don’t want that kind of responsibility. We would rather be the servants who bury our God-given talents. (Except we lull ourselves into thinking that God will change the scripted ending of that particular story.)
Our theology reflects this more than anything. We pay lip service to our sonship and election, but in our hears a lot of us are fearful, insecure, guilty slaves who don’t even thing themselves worthy to be called God’s sons. We call ourselves believers, but many of us can’t even give a straight answer to one very simple question: am I certain of my future with God or am I not? When asked this very simple question, we suddenly get theologically constipated, and would rather put on a dry prune of a face, and resort to sophistry, ambiguity, equivocation, and bloviation. “Yeah, but …”, “Well, what if …”. We wear our fearful uncertainty as a badge of honor, as a hallmark of honorable religious dour-faced piety, and have the gall to call that “faith”. And all the while, in the Scriptures, “faith is being sure”.
We refuse to steward God’s glory given to us, hiding behind the pious phrases: “God will not give his glory to anyone”, “Let’s give all the glory to God, we want none for ourselves”.
Yeah God, we don’t want that glory that Jesus paid for so dearly, why don’t you take it back, God, while we sing a tearful hymn about it, soothing our orphan hearts. Forget what Jesus said in his last prayer before the cross:
22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them
In the words of Quentin Tarantino, we prefer to be “Inglorious Basterds” and chalk up our ignorance to humility, rather than step up to the place prepared for us by God. No guts, no glory, no sonship. Pure man-made, ready-to-wear religion.
God is asking the same question all over again: “Who told you that you are naked?”. And the answer is still the same. Well, almost. It’s our over-sensitive conscience, jacked up by all the empty nutrients resulting from a steady diet of eating from the wrong tree of religion. We don’t need even satan to help us destroy ourselves, we are doing a pretty bang-up job all by our lonely selves (I use “we” here in an editorial sense. I am not part of this equation, thank you very much.)
When will we wake up to the fact of the Good News, and let God transform our hearts on his terms? Perfect love casts all fear. There’s no fear in punishment.
There’s always a place at the father’s table, for those willing to come to his feast wearing a son’s garment.