When Jesus had been baptized, just as he came up from. the water, suddenly the heaves were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:16-17)
See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. (1 John 3:1)
You did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, “Abba! Father!” it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God. (Romans 8:15)
Jesus once said, “Unless you become like children, you will be no means enter the kingdom of God.”
Hmmm. I wonder.
I often hear this being said as a kind of warning, of missing out on something, of impending failure. Probably true in some way.
I wonder if we can hear this as an invitation instead?
“You are children of God and as such you are invited into the kingdom of God.”
I am a beloved son of God. God has called me a child of God. The Spirit of God bears witness with my spirit that I am a child of God. And with that, I cry out, “Abba! Father!”
As I consider what God has to say about my essential, True Self identity, this is what it comes down to. I am a child of God. I am a son of God. Before I am anything else and even before sin can come in and do its destructive work, I am this. I am a child of God, I am! Whatever message the world may give me and whatever distorted image may be suggested to me by demonic forces, and even whatever I may say to myself…none of these will deny the fundamental reality that I am a beloved son of God.
I suspect that the warning Jesus gave us was to let go of something that is leading me astray. This is the self that I construct for the world to embrace. It is a life that I won’t let go of, but it is a life of the ego manifesting itself as something that does not exist. It is a wonderful thing to watch a child be a child before the false, ego self begins to take hold. There is this wonderful abandon in which the child lives that is beautiful. This is the invitation.
I choose to abide in the reality of being a child of God. I can abide in this reality with God and rest. There is nothing I need to prove. There is no one I need to impress. I can simply be who I am as a beloved son of God.
And for this I am grateful!