Memorial Day - A day to remember who truly loves us
Another thought from my friend George.
This one is a well worn idea:
I know this is rather a tired idea, but the illustration happened to me this weekend, which started me thinking a bit. I know I am dangerous when I do that. My daughter, her husband and their family are in the States for a few months on furlough and staying in a house near my son and his family. This weekend I visited them for one of the rare times I get to see my family together at once. As I was standing in the kitchen talking to my daughter-in-law, Noah, my six-year-old grandson came in, climbed up on a chair and without a word jumped straight toward me. I caught him, of course, and he did that several more times. I asked why he thought I would catch him every time. His answer was simple and expected, but it made me happy: “Because you are my grandpa.” We could go in several directions with that, but it occurred to me that he was laying claim to a special relationship because there is something of me in his blood. I might not be that reliable with your grandchild, but for him, I would give all I am to keep him from falling. There is a connection there that is immediate, even if I see him only twice per year. In fact, my daughter’s son was just two weeks old when they left for their field for 3.5 years. All he knew of me was Skype. When he came to my house this past March, though, the connection was almost immediate. There is something of me in his blood as well, even if he looks more like his father. So, Noah can rely on me to catch him when he jumps. He is my grandson and I am his grandpa. That will always be true.
So, I wondered if we are brash to claim a similar special relationship with God based on that same sort of connection. I mean many might look at us funny if we say there is something from God in us. In fact I think that is exactly the case, although there is someone in us, not something. God has put himself in us in the form of his Holy Spirit and that forms a special relationship for us. Paul said it this way in Romans 8:15: “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!" (Rom 8:15 ESV). God has created the same family relationship with us, but as sons, not grandsons. But I think our adoption is less a matter of a court decree and more a matter of rebirth, in which God has become truly our father. So, will God let us fall? I say no, because he lives within us and forms a strong connection with us. Here are more of Paul’s words: “Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” (Eph 4:30 NAU) Maybe another: “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” (Phi 1:6 ESV) So will we fall? Maybe stumble, but never fall. The connection is too strong. God is my father and I am his son.
But see how I go on. I hope for the faith and the trust of a six-year-old boy. I pray that for all of us.