Cell group this week was all about our identity in God, and being His child. It's one of those things that I know in theory but not in my heart. I don't understand it. I don't recognise it. I always pray "Father God", but never appreciate the implications. I've always thought that seeing God as your father is really hard for some people, especially if you've had bad experiences of hurt through your earthly dad. Knowing God as the perfect father is something I want to step into.
"But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him."- Luke 15:20
God's love is prodigal. He absolutely delights in us. Even when we stink of pigs and have spat in His face, He's there, running towards us with open arms welcoming us back, just pouring out love. He'd stand between us and any danger (I think He already has). He wants only the best for us. When we cry, His heart breaks. When we laugh, He celebrates with us.
"You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise. What I am saying is that as long as the heir is a child, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate. He is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father. So also, when we were children, we were in slavery under the basic principles of the world. But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, "Abba, Father." So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir." -Galatians 3:26-4:7
Heirs of God. Sons of God. Clothed in Jesus. Implications: God the father loves us as much as He loves Jesus. The incredible, intimate relationship that Jesus has with the father, we can have too. So why, oh why, aren't I claiming this?
One simple action to step closer to this intimacy was to change what I call God. When I pray, like I said, "heavenly father" or something similar just slips out automatically. My challenge is to call Him Abba, or as it were, "daddy". A word I haven't used for years that seem ten times as long again. The first time at cell was strange. I felt awkward and vulnerable and childish. For about ten seconds. Now, I've got to admit, I love it. I absolutely adore the fact that I'm this little kid with this amazing and perfect dad. I pray into my phone as I walk around outside pretty often...the only way I can describe it is that when I call Him "dad" or "daddy", it's so safe, so reassuring, it just feels like coming home.
As for other things. I went to a talk tonight put on by the Islamic society of the uni, entitled, "Jesus was a muslim". He wasn't. It was interesting, and enlightening, and I'm glad that we're able to go to events like that put on by all the societies- it can only be good. By the end of it, I was just welling up with gratitude that I know Jesus, and with heartbreak for the people that don't.
And in terms of other stuff, I just don't know. A few days has given dust time to settle. Things have been processed, thought through, accepted and refuted. I lay awake last night and realised just how stupid I am, and my life plan (which was never written in more than faint scribbly pencil) has completely changed. Or just been erased altogether. It may be too late, but that doesn't matter. Anyway, most of all I'm glad that grace runs through everything, and I'm grateful that friends haven't been lost. I am content, but at the same time there are things I would change if I could, which seems to be what life is like much of the time. Whatever, I believe that people are amazing, and God much, much more so.