Slaves only obey their masters, but sons act on what has been modeled in their household. Sometimes we can live like a slave waiting to be commanded rather than like a son who understands the values and vision of a healthy, holy household. As believers, we are called to be about our Father’s business!
Abiding daily in Father’s love… is simply dealing with the issues in your life moment-by-moment, not waiting for a crisis to take place to seek God’s face, but living with Him daily in all the matters that come up, no matter how big or small. My definition of walking in the Spirit is moment-by-moment walking in humility and repentance and dealing with things as they are now, and not waiting for a dramatic experience.
Because God is always good, His conditional promises are not about withholding something from us but rather about creating a position of sustained blessing for us. It does no good for God to bless us if we cannot persevere in the blessing. As a good Father, God is more interested in a life of blessing than simply a few encounters that bless. Conditions propel us into a position of sustained blessing. Conditions require alignment with a heavenly thought, value, or action.
God’s affirmation doesn’t condone our sin, and it doesn’t acquiesce in our mediocrity. He calls us to repentance and holiness and discipleship. But he begins with a simple, unconditional affirmation: I love you. You are my daughter. You are my son. With you I am well pleased. When we embrace that affirmation, we make a good start. We don’t start falteringly, hesitantly, guiltily, waiting for rejection, or wondering when we will get cut from the squad. We start on the right foot, embraced and embracing the God who loves us and has an eternal salvation for us.
When you have failed and know you deserve the rod of judgment, what does the presence of the Father represent to you? What do you think when you hear the words, “You just wait till your father gets home!”? Do you picture God as the great policeman in the sky, waiting to pounce on any infraction of the law you may commit? Or is He your loving Daddy who brings the joy back to your heart, whom you can’t wait to spend time with, and who can’t wait to spend time with you?
Jesus told us to begin prayer with “Our Father.” All true prayer starts with knowing you’re speaking to a Father, not a slave owner.
Let God not be defined so much by holiness and sovereignty in which loving relatedness is incidental, but by the dance of trinitarian life. And let us see Spirit as effecting relationships, connecting Son to Father, and us to God. Spirit is the ecstasy of divine life, the overabundance of joy, that gives birth to the universe and ever works to bring about a fullness of unity.
What loveliness and sheer liveliness God is! We praise the Father, who is primordial light and unoriginated being, absolute mystery, without beginning or end. We praise our Lord Jesus Christ, everlasting Son of the Father, who lives in fellowship with the Father, ever responding to his love. We praise the Spirit, the Lord and giver of life, who is breathed out everlastingly—living, ecstatic, flaming. Each person of the Trinity exists eternally with the others, each has its gaze fixed on the others, each casts a glance away from itself in love to the others, the eye of each lover ever fixed on the beloved other.