Sunday 6 May, 2018
1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes scattered among the nations: Greetings. 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
We have a family tree on our study door at home. It traces our family back to a First Fleet sailor, showing the generations descending down to me.
There is another birth date it doesn’t show – my birth in Christ. In 1982 Jesus revealed himself to me, and at that moment I knew that God had chosen me (v18) How? Through the “word of truth”, the gospel of love.
This rebirth was like a realignment of my spirit. Now my spirit was alive to the Holy Spirit who is God. It was like the compass had been set to true North and the track ahead previously hidden was now clear. I was reborn into God’s family. It is such a privilege to be a child of God, to have a Father who loves me, who smiles to hear my praises, rejoices in my service, strengthens me when I am weak and teaches me when I try to do it on my own. Simply, he cares for me.
My spirit gets misdirected sometimes still, anxious, overwhelmed by messages and priorities of people not in this family. Paul anticipated this when he wrote that we should “be made new in the attitude of your minds, and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” My loving Father who chose me to be reborn has given me his Holy Spirit to clothe me in my new self, inside and out.
Heavenly Father, I am so happy to be born your child. My heart is yours. You know me as a parent knows a child. I pray that your powerful word of truth will bring my friends into your family too. Amen
Written by Claire Moore
Claire, I love the comparison you have made here with your geneology and your birth in Christ!
I have often wondered what a map of my faith family tree would look like – If I could see the connections from myself, with the person that led me to Christ and then the person that led him to Christ etc.
I know that this kind of family tree would be much harder to trace and research, but I do know that there would be amazing stories of lives changed by the power of the gospel and by the Holy Spirit.