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Ice Skates and Advocates

2011 sept boston_1896

I hope your week is going well. I know people are squeezing summer vacations in as back-to-school preparation is breathing down our necks.

Weather-wise, we actually still have plenty of summer left. It’s just an odd time of year because I equate school with fall and we have a whole lot of heat and humidity left to endure.

And then, I have been thinking about ice skates this week. I know.

Not just any ice skates but a very special pair IMG_4949that I still have hanging on a peg in our garage.

I thought of them this week when I was working on my summer Bible Study; What Love Is by Kelly Minter. It’s a study of 1, 2 and 3 John and is really touching my heart.

My homework this week included three ways John refers to Jesus at the beginning of 1 John chapter 2. One of the names He is given is our advocate.

I have been an advocate at different times for my husband, for our children and for my parents. I have advocated for those who I think are being misunderstood or misrepresented in a disagreement. I have advocated in prayer for people who need intercession.

But for this study, the question asked for a time when an advocate had come to MY aid.

Bible studies are interesting because they pull up memories and thoughts that can sometimes take the student by surprise.

My first thought response was my dad the winter of 1963. I would have been about 4 and 1/2 years old and we were stationed at Harmon Air Force Base in Newfoundland.

Our houses all backed up to a central open area where we kids played. The neighbors had joined forces and flooded the area with their garden hoses to form an ice rink.

As the older kids skated around, I slid here and there in my winter boots.

Until my dad came out and plucked me up off the ice, put me in his VW van and took me to either the Post Exchange or a downtown store.

I still remember him lifting me up on the counter and telling the clerk I needed ice skates and sure enough when we returned home, I had an official pair of white skates with a little metal blade.

We left Newfoundland that summer and, of course, I outgrew them. But they remained tucked in my closet through the years, because they reminded me of that day.

That day when my dad advocated for me.

Which brings me to the Bible study.

Because the next question was to look at the details of the story and describe what qualities and characteristics defined the person.

Well…on reflection I had to say that my dad had the power and resources and ability to do this for me. He chose to be benevolent and kind when he saw me out there in my clunky boots. He acted on my behalf and he affirmed me as his daughter.

This gives me a picture of what Jesus has done as my advocate.IMG_4483

I was separated from the Father, sliding around in my sin, when He chose me and showed His kindness to me.

He, who bore my sin and the sin of all the world, plucked me up and took me to the Father. He acted on my behalf, took my place and affirmed me as His daughter.

So often I want Jesus to advocate for me when I think I have been wronged or misunderstood.

I want Him to advocate on my behalf when health, relationships or finances are askew.

But He has already been and continues to be my advocate for the most important need in my life – the forgiveness of my sins and my right standing with God the Father.IMG_9267

When I pull that little pair of white skates out this Christmas to hang on our front porch or see them pulling into the garage at the end of the day, they will be doubly precious to me.

A sweet reminder of a father’s advocacy for his daughter and my Savior’s advocacy before the Father that made me His daughter…forever.

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