Give Me That Mountain

Belonging to a Family

A change of mind. Day thirty-nine...

Several years ago I met with some clients who, after we'd finished with business, told me about two homeless brothers they had taken into their home. These boys had been living on the streets of Kansas City.

A couple of things have stuck with me from this conversation. First of all, the brothers warned the couple not to wake them up in close proximity because they were used to sleeping on the streets—where being woke up usually meant some kind of an altercation. And secondly, the boys, even though they had full access to any food in the house, would sneak food out of the kitchen by hiding it in their clothing.

homeless brothers

What would cause boys, who had left their lives on the streets of a big city and had moved into a nice house with a wonderful family, to steal food that they could have freely eaten any time they were hungry? Most of us, when visiting parents, children, or other close family members, don't hesitate to snack on whatever is in sight. So it's hard for us to understand why the boys would steal what was already theirs to eat.

Those brothers didn't realize that they belonged—that they were now a part of a family who would take care of them.

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; (1 Peter 2:9 NKJV)

We have the same difficulty in realizing that we now belong to God and His family.

We act just like those boys when we leave the darkness of this world and enter into God's marvelous light. We continue to act like we have to beg or steal the things of God because we don't realize that we have complete access to God's kingdom.

As a member of my family, I have the right to eat whatever is available (unless it's the dessert for after dinner) when I'm in the home of a family member. And anyone in my family has the right to eat whatever is available in our home. In fact, it makes me feel good whenever our grown children are visiting and just go for the refrigerator or pantry without even asking. It makes me realize that they still consider our home to be their home as well.

As a member of God's family, I have the right to all of the promises that God has given me in His Word.

But we certainly don't act like we have a right to all of God's promises. We don't act like we even belong in God's “home.” We act more like unwelcome guests, hoping to get just a little bit of His attention.

Children who are under age are no better off than slaves, even though everything their parents own will someday be theirs. This is because children are placed in the care of guardians and teachers until the time their parents have set. That is how it was with us. We were like children ruled by the powers of this world. But when the time was right, God sent his Son, and a woman gave birth to him. His Son obeyed the Law, so he could set us free from the Law, and we could become God's children. Now that we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts. And his Spirit tells us that God is our Father. You are no longer slaves. You are God's children, and you will be given what he has promised. (Galatians 4:1‐7 CEV)

I am not suggesting that we act like those grown children who want Mom to wash their dirty laundry, or want Dad to loan out his tools only to see them lost or damaged. I'm not suggesting that we act like freeloaders, looking for handouts.

I am suggesting that we study God's promises to us, His children, and take them as our own.

Doesn't that privilege of intimate conversation with God make it plain that you are not a slave, but a child? And if you are a child, you're also an heir, with complete access to the inheritance. (Galatians 4:7 MSG)

Have a good day,
Mike

Image credit: Ross Pollack

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