Our task is to consider this greatest Father-child relationship of all and to discover how we may share in this, the most intimate of relations. It is for us to consider, doing so not merely with wonder and amazement as though such a relationship is beyond our grasp, but more importantly
to identify qualities, characteristics, and dynamics that we may emulate from our Lord’s example
and to benefit from all that it means to
abide in the “safe place” of our heavenly
Father.It is worth noting that when the vertical relationship with God is healthy and tuned, so also thehorizontal relationships between us will be (e.g. spousal, siblings, offspring, within the body of Christ, our community-workplace ties, our friends, and even our enemies). This principle is well-attested in Scripture and again by the apostle John. Consider the following translation of thisimportant text:
“If we claim that we experience a shared life with him and continue to stumble around in
the dark,we're obviously lying through our teeth
we're not living what we claim. But if we walk in the light,God himself being the light, we also experience a shared life with one another, as the sacrificed
blood of Jesus, God's Son, purges all our sin.”
1 John 1:6-7
MSG)From the lips of our Savior we discover deference to and dependence upon his Father. Two of many scripturally notable examples are helpful at this point, implicit trust and fervent prayer. Eachserves to beg the question concerning how we may emulate Jesus who in the days of his flesh livedas one conscious of and subjected to the dictates (and the timetable) of his Father purposes:1.
The totality of the earthly experience of our Lord was in the hands of his Father. Thestunning reality of this truth revealed to us draws us closer to the realization of true andabiding rest. Rest is received from Jesus as from one who alone can place us and keep us ina right relation with the Father.
The very “rest” that
results in deliverance from just condemnation also provides security and satisfaction for our daily walk with Christ. Whothen will become simple as a child; trusting, humbled and seeking from the hand of Godall that is needed for life, health, safety and an assorted host of needs which contribute toour well-being (see
)? Alternatively stated, who will resign every need pertaining
to one’s existence
in this world and
destiny in the next to the all-sufficient hands of God?
From the lips of Jesus we hear…
"I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure. All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father,and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
Prayer was and is central to the life of Jesus. That it was fervent, even importunate, is
evident from the following brief survey…
He was praying at his baptism prior to receiving the anointing of the Spirit (
He was praying prior to the momentous choosing the Twelve (
He prayed giving thanks prior to calling forth Lazarus from the tomb(