When I was a kid, I loved playing secret agents. My friends and I would put on our Sunday suits and pretend to be agents of her Majesty’s Secret Service. It could be well over 90 degrees outside, but there we were, dressed as cool as any 007 Bond character.
Eventually, we would be called in from the field by our superiors (our Moms) and questioned about our critical …umm, intelligence. We would emerge from the debriefing knowing that sadly, the only undercover work in our future was an early bedtime. Shaken, but not stirred to change the parameters of our daily mission, we would put our suits on under other clothes before leaving the house. After all, spies live dangerously don’t they?
Since those early days of high imaginative adventure, I have made this one dangerous and life challenging decision. It has fueled my life with high-octane radical risks and pushed the envelope of the man I am. That life changing decision was this; I decide to follow Christ with all that I am. My passion for loving my wife, for fathering, and all that I am, is powered by the fact that I am God’s son.
“What is our relationship to God? . . . The position that we stand in to him is that of a son. Adam is the father of our bodies, and God is the father of our spirits.” ~ John Taylor
This is the critical junction of one’s life—being able to identify and accept God’s vision for us—as sons first. This is where the doorway to fathering hinges, here is the thrust, and the sending off point of our lives. Here we taste of the goodness of God and become able and willing to make known that goodness to others.
When we find complete and undeniable dependence on Him, then we begin to understand our roles as sons. When we place ourselves and position our will under the Father’s authority, only then can we hope to be a father like Him. Like our Lord (and brother) Jesus who emptied himself to do the Father’s will, so must we. Everything Jesus did, every miracle He performed, each parable He shared, displayed the role of a son following His Father’s wishes. That purposed intimacy of father-son relationship showcased the deliberate and desired love affair God wants with all of us. A focused communion that delivers the orphan in us all, enabling sonship to take root.
See how very much our heavenly Father loves us, for He allows us to be called His children, and we really are!” I John 3:1 NLT
The first choice begins with God, He chooses us to become part of His family. The second choice rests with us, whether we will journey with Him. The Father calls our name to join in this passage to become like His son Jesus. I believe that our sense of purpose depends on how we answer that call. How completely we can wrap our senses, our understanding and our faith around that core decision will determine just how effective that transformation will be in our lives. The good news is that Father God is committed to His sons and daughters. He is determined to help us grow in to the “likeness” of Jesus.
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
“For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.”
“Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” Rom 8:28-30
I like how the Message puts it:
“God knew what he was doing from the very beginning. He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love him along the same lines as the life of his Son. The Son stands first in the line of humanity he restored. We see the original and intended shape of our lives there in him.
“After God made that decision of what his children should be like, he followed it up by calling people by name. After he called them by name, he set them on a solid basis with himself. And then, after getting them established, he stayed with them to the end, gloriously completing what he had begun.”
Called, named, and established, sounds like the Father’s handiwork to me.