A quick Monday thought <3

As we swing into a new week I know all kinds of ways that the weekend was maybe wonderful and hard to leave ..

and that the week ahead could be the start of your much-anticipated summer vacation get-away or one that holds so much tension and foreboding you would like to pull the covers back over your head and ride it out in the safety of your own home.

Either way, child of God.

You are loved.

And you are blessed.

Sometimes we only believe we are blessed when we FEEL blessed.

But God’s blessing on us is something we can KNOW.

I am not doing a sermon recap (although it was a very good one…so if you missed it this week FCC people, do take time to listen online)…but…

As we were led through the Transfiguration of Jesus on the mountaintop as recorded in Matthew 17, I recognized a familiar phrase that was voiced out of heaven…

“This is My beloved Son..in whom I am well pleased.”  Matthew 17:5

I knew I had just read that same phrase earlier in the week in the opening chapters of Matthew.

In fact I had written them down in my journal because in Matthew 3, just after Jesus came up out of the waters of baptism…Heaven opened and the Spirit rested on Him and a voice came out of nowhere earthly and said…

sure enough…

“This is My beloved Son…in whom I am well pleased.” Matthew 3: 17

And how wonderful does all of that sound?

This ONE…right here…belongs to Me..is My Son…loved deeply by Me…and who brings me great joy and pleasure and I am putting my seal of approval on Him.

Blessed, right?

And yet in both cases, what happens next would most assuredly not FEEL like a blessing in our human terms.

Because the verse after the baptism proclamation tells us that the same Spirit that descended like a sweet dove as music played and the clouds parted and God boomed out His love…

LED…

Directed the feet of this same beloved Son…

directly and purposefully into…

the wilderness…

for the express activity of ….

being tempted by…

THE…

Devil.

And after the Transfiguration experience, Jesus began sharing that the Spirit was leading His feet once again to a place where He would face this same adversary and that it would appear He lost this time.

I have to say that the trials and the chaos of facing temptation and the daily and intentional dying to myself and crucifying my flesh does not smack of a perk of being a beloved child of God.

But if Christ is my example; then I must accept that it is indeed, because I am blessed, that I suffer.

That laying down my life to take up His is, in fact, the blessing.

That temptations will come, perhaps disguised as guilty pleasures but quite often as seasons that are barren and dry and lonely and hard.

Times when I will not walk by what I see…what I feel…but by what I know.

But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.  John 1:12-13

You are beloved, little child of God…walk as though you are blessed…up and down the mountains…in and out of the valleys…you are loved <3

 

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