Yay! 15 days down; 25 days to go!
This chapter definitely has an introduction/review feel to it. Three things occurred in this chapter that really hit me:
1) about being created by God v. being a child of God:
When we place our faith in Christ, God becomes our Father, we become his children, other believers become our brothers and sisters, and the church becomes our spiritual family. The family of God includes all believers in the past, the present, and the future. Every human being was created by God, but not everyone is a child of God. The only way to get into God’s family is by being born again into it [Emphasis mine].
2) Eternal inheritance v. earthly retirement:
Paul said, “I want you to realize what a rich and glorious inheritance he has given to his people [Ephesians 1:18b NLT].” What exactly does that inheritance include? First, we will get to be with God forever. Second, we will be completely changed to be like Christ. Third, we will be freed from all pain, death, and suffering. Fourth, we will be rewarded and reassigned positions of service. Fifth, we will get to share in Christ’s glory…The Bible says, “God has reserved a priceless inheritance for his children. It is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay [1 Peter 1:4 NLT].” This means that your eternal inheritance is priceless, pure, permanent, and protected. No one can take it from you; it can’t be destroyed by war, a poor economy, or a natural disaster. This eternal inheritance, not retirement, is what you should be looking forward to and working for [Emphasis mine].”
3) The fact that God didn’t need a family he desired one.
God has always existed in loving relationship to himself, so he has never been lonely. He didn’t need a family–he desired one, so he devised a plan to create us, bring us into his family, and share with us all he has. This gives God great pleasure. The Bible says, “It was a happy day for him when he gave us our new lives, through the truth of his Word, and we became, as it were, the first children in his new family [James 1:8 LB/Emphasis mine].”
This latter idea has helped me so much in terms of relationships, especially romantic ones. I feel that if more people moved from needing romantic relationships to simply wanting them or desiring them the status of these relationships would be much better. When you need another person you become dependent on them and over time this can become draining. By creating a desire relationship you create an interdependence which increases your chances of having a healthy relationship (Basically, don’t do what the US has done with China and the dollars and manufacturing of cheap goods thing as this is a borderline interdependent/dependent relationship but I digress :)). Interdependence represents a balance. Independence is one extreme and dependence is the other extreme (Think dependance — interdependence — independence). I thank God that I am at a place of wanting a romantic relationship not needing one. I know I can make it through life alone, all by myself, but I don’t desire to do so. I want that interdependent romantic relationship where I can share my life with someone not a dependent relationship where I burden my life on someone nor an independent one where I act like I don’t need “nobody.”
Well by treating them like my family? It sounds funny, but with family you have to love them even if you don’t like them. I have found with my own brothers that I did not always like them but I always loved them. Sometimes by loving not liking someone you don’t say a lot but that silence is golden as it keeps you (me) from talking about them negatively to others. Beyond this, I can also work harder in forming close relationships with other believers and allowing them (some of them) into my life more. I think it was during one of these days that I talked about my desire to seek out the Elizabeth’s in my life and sit under their wings more. This too is something I can do to treat other believers like my own family.
Thank God, It’s Friday!