I am going to spend the four Wednesdays of Advent integrating thoughts on this season of preparation with meditations from The Green Letters: Principles of Spiritual Growth A Clarion Classic by Miles J. Stanford (you might want to get “The Complete Green Letters” also available here)
If you don’t have this on your bookshelf, I highly recommend it. It’s a ‘Lifer’. A Book that you will come back to over and over again. My husband and I were introduced to it while we were in a year internship in Hungary through our Discipleship Leaders, ministering twenty plus years there which began during Communism and they have fed long and hard off of it.
Why Am I called, ‘My Beloved Child’?
It is because He condescended infinite lengths and took on frail human flesh. It is because He did not hold back any of His divine goodness yet did not consider equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being made as us—in our propensity to all sorts of mess, brokenness, temptation, failure, fumbling stumbling tumbling steps—and withstood it all with the simplicity of a perfection wrought through communion with the Father and the seeking of His Glory alone. He became as our servant. With every breath He served the obstinate, rebellious, idol-worshipping, prodigal reality of our humanity—yours and mine. He withheld none of Himself and ultimately walked the shameful Golgotha hill and lifted high that moment-to-moment dying to all that He. Truly. IS. making a way for the tripped up, unable to find the way, desperately lost ones—namely you and me. And now in Glory that could come in no other way than being who He is and walking what He walked, He is lifted high over all Heaven and Earth and is the Glory of the Invisible God. (paraphrase of Philippians 2: 5-11)
It is because of His journey born into time that night in Bethlehem—the Event to forever change the course of time and Eternity for all who find Him and believe on His Name and for those who believed in His coming—that we have been given the right to become Children of God. Not born of blood or of the WILL of flesh or man, but.of.God. (John 1:12-13)
It is because of He who I eagerly await this Advent THAT I AM GIVEN A NEW NAME CLOSEST TO HIS HEART AND MINE, He says ‘YOU. ARE. MY. BELOVED. CHILD.’
It is because He, the Christ-child, walked this life I walk in every aspect from first to last breath facing all that would tear me away from Abba Father and bridged that infinite gap through a life lived in perfect communion with God the Father that all of my moments can be new and lived in communion with Our. Abba. Father…
So, this third chapter in ‘the Green Letters’ entitled ‘Acceptance’, that led to my writing the words above, has EVERYTHING TO DO WITH Advent.
As I wait and meditate upon His coming and why it is I am fully accepted, Beloved Child of God, I marvel and I let go.
“The soul has to go on until it finds there is nothing to rest on but the abstract goodness of God; and then, ‘If God is for us, who can be against us.’” (Darby quoted, p. 20)
I let go of all that could be considered the good that I do which I all-too-often cling to in spite of truth proclaimed long and deep all across the pages of my life that it is but filthy rags when it comes to my acceptance as God’s Beloved Child. I let go of the plethora of performance-based arguments for my good standing before God as they rise up within me. I let go and wait for the Christ-child to be born and to live the life I desperately need Him to live on my behalf.
“’Grace, once bestowed, is not withdrawn: for God knew all the human exigencies beforehand; His action was independent of them, not dependent on them.’” (Newell quoted, p. 21)
I journey deeper into this Grace that is an ideal reality made plausible through the implausible birth of Him.
“To believe, and to consent to be loved while unworthy, is the great secret.”
“To expect to be blessed, though realizing more and more lack of worth.”
“To rely on God’s chastening (child training) hand as a mark of His kindness.”
“To ‘hope to be better’ (hence acceptable) is to fail to see yourself in Christ only.”
“To be disappointed with yourself is to have believed in yourself.”
(Newell quoted, p. 21)
And so I receive the gift of Grace through Faith perfectly packaged in a Babe in a Manger and hold Him close and tight and allow His Father and Mine, Our Abba Father, to love me as His Beloved Child. For all eternity there is no grander gift…and it is mine, and yours, this Christmas and always.
Shared with ‘Rejoice!’ Blog Carnival