S (Scripture): Romans 8:14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are the sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery leading again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness to our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 And if children, then heirs (namely, heirs of God and also fellow heirs with Christ) – if indeed we suffer with him so we may also be glorified with him.
O (Observation): To be brought into the fold as a child of God, one is adopted. Whether a descendant of Abraham or not, one is only adopted, and never privileged to claim the name for one’s self.
As adopted children of God (through the work of the Spirit), one also becomes an heir of God…not just for the gift of eternal life, but that our whole reason for being is transformed from self-seeking behavior, to life-giving behavior for self and others.
A (Application): How hard is it to understand that being a child of God is not something we earn on our own? We give ourselves credit for believing…but that is HARDLY the case to sustain a relationship with God.
In a wildly irrational act, Jesus chose to suffer for our sake. Jesus showed that suffering humiliation and death was way more important than allowing the world to engage in the life of “redemptive violence” (thanks, Rob Bell, for that phrase)..that we each have to get our own way, or the last punch!
Instead of my view of Christianity, or your view of Christianity, there is simply Christ crucified. And as the Spirit joins us to Christ, we no longer have to fear our failures or shortcomings. Instead, we focus on our callings to live out God’s love in the world.
We are adopted into God’s family. Thanks be to God!
P (Prayer): Lord, we thank you for bringing us into the fold. Amen.