Last month my youngest son, Levi, earned his promotion to Cadet Airman First Class (Civil Air Patrol) – in the wake of his older brother, David, who just a month previously earned his promotion to Second Lieutenant as a Cadet Officer. These are two very different young men, stretching and growing, each at their own pace. Levi is more social, really one to work as part of a team, enjoying the group aspects; he is by nature a relational leader. As typical for the youngest sibling, Levi struggles to be accepted for who he is by his older brothers. David is very much a motivated self-starter, a natural leader with a great deal of experience in his short 18 years. I am so very proud of both of these young men for their all their effort and faithfulness to their commitment with the Civil Air Patrol.
Each and every one of us is unique. We bring different gifts and different offerings to those we love as well as to all of humanity. It’s good for us to come before the Father, the One who created us and is intimately acquainted with every little detail of our lives and our make-up. We need to know who we are and how we impact the world around us. As we grown in our understanding of who God us to be, we need learn to give preference to being God’s hands, feet, words, heart to those He brings around us. This is what true humility is all about.
We must make a choice to be aware of the value God puts on others. As we do, we find it is a joy to honor who they are and how God made them. It takes intentionality to not put pressure on others to conform to our image and also to make the choice to not try to conform to the image of others, especially to those to whom we look up and admire. It can be difficult to instead point others (and ourselves for that matter) toward Christ and His standard of love. But is just what God asks of us.
I don’t know about you, but for me, it can sometimes seem much easier to want to please a close friend, a family member, a spouse, or sometimes even our children than it is to figure out how to please our Heavenly Father. The response is immediate, we can read their faces or their body language, or hear the tone of their voices. And the reaction is most often immediate as well. But, truly, when I think about it, I know it is worth whatever effort is required to put my Abba Father first. I long to hear His “well done” and it is worth everything to know He is proud of me.
And truly, knowing this comes down to just one thing – remembering I am His beloved daughter. He DELIGHTS in me. In fact, He delights over me with singing! And He does you, too! And the only thing He is looking for from us is FAITH! The faith to believe Him, to rely on Him, to trust His work in each of us, and the faith to praise Him in ALL things! His love is truly amazing – even when mine utterly fails. He is there to pick me up and make it right.
Yes, I am completely undone by this personal, intimate God who loves me so. How about you?