We are Made for Family
The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’”
Just what do we mean when we say “We are made for family?” To answer this question, we have to go back to ancient Jerusalem and that fateful day where Immanuel, “God with us”, died on a cross at Calvary. We have to go back to that day where Jesus Christ conquered death, freed us from the shackles of sin, and reconciled to God all those who believe in Him. The Good News of the Gospel is so much more than a “Get Out of Hell Free card.” It is an invitation into the eternal family of God. We were made for HIM, and the sacrifice of Jesus Christ is our invitation to accept our position as co-heirs with Christ and beloved sons and daughters of the Creator of the Universe, bringing Him glory in all we do.
Before, above, and beyond all else, THIS is who we are. We, the Church, are beloved sons and daughters in the family of God, made to glorify His holy name. This is what we were made for. Since the dawn of creation, God has desired to be in relationship with us. In the garden, on the mountain, and on the crossbeam, we see again and again a God who created us to know and love Him and to be known and loved by Him - our good, good Father.
Yet in our day to day lives, living in the “already but not yet” of the resurrection, it can be easy to fall into the trap of believing that we were made for something else. One of the easiest and most innocent mistakes we can make in ministry is to confuse who we are with what we do. In a book I was reading recently, the author describes these two things as our primary and our secondary calling. As Christians, we all have unique giftings, talents, and passions that allow us to serve as the hands and feet of Christ in a broken and hurting world. Yet this grand call to action must always take a back seat to our primary calling, which is to know and live into the deep love and relationship we have with Jesus Christ. “Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” (John 17:3)
This is eternal life. We were made for relationship with the God of the Universe. We were made for His family. It is so so so important that we do not forget this or confuse our primary and secondary calling. I myself am guilty of falling into this trap - and from this place of well-intentioned but misguided priorities stem some of our biggest struggles: depression, exhaustion, burnout, frustration, despair. In confusing our primary and secondary calling, we can begin to see and define ourselves by successes, failures, experiences, accomplishments, and many other things that absolutely do not define us. Yes, it is true that God has prepared good works in advance for us to do as we seek to see His Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven. But when it comes down to it, and all that is stripped away, we are made for eternal life in the Family of God and created to bring Him glory.
All of our fountains are in Him. If we remember who we are and what we were made for, we will be able to pour out our lives in ministry and love for others from a place of overflowing abundance. We will live not to please ourselves but to glorify Him. Not only that, but the deeper we let our roots grow into the love of Christ, the more powerful our testimony to His love becomes. While it is true that we desire to see every child know the love and protection of a permanent family in their time here on earth, what we want for them above all else is that they come to know the perfect love of the Father and the eternal joy of relationship with Him.
“Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!”