My wife, daughter and I were at one of our daughter’s 5th grade conferences for school and the teacher told us about this 40 book challenge that they would be doing for the rest of the school year. The challenge was to read a certain amount from different genres to help expand the student’s reading. In order to have fun with our only daughter my wife and I decided to do the challenge as well.
This is going to be interesting for me since I so rarely read any fiction. I got a recommendation of an audio book that I am now in the middle of listening. The premise of the book is about a medieval regent who takes some orphan boys and attempts to teach them to act like a missing prince in order to steal the throne. I haven’t finished the book yet but it got me thinking about a challenge they had. It was hard for them to act like a prince when they were orphans in their mind.
This reminded me of one of my favorite verses. 1 John 3:1 –See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. (ESV) Thinking about this story there is an important truth for us: we are not pretending to be children of God if we have given ourselves to Jesus. We really are children of God. This truth has some powerful impacts for us.
We don’t have to live bound by sin.
It is too easy to get in the mindset of orphans and feel like our identity is to be captive to wherever sin holds us back. One of the big lies of our day the devil is using is by questioning people’s identity. It is also true that Christians fall to the lies of identity as well. “Well that is a sin I am just not able to overcome.” “That is just the way that I have always been.” As a follower of Jesus that no longer needs to be your identity because you are a child of God.
We are free to love.
After John challenges them to leave their sin because of who they are he also reminds them of the command to love each other. He even challenges them to be loving with their material possessions. Expressing your love to others in actions and truth comes as we understand that we are children of God and orphans no longer.
Remain in your source of power.
These two things can feel challenging. But there is hope. For David in the Old Testament he was anointed king but had years before he was seated on the throne. He still acted kingly because he remembered his anointing. In 1 John 2:27 he reminds his readers of the anointing that Jesus gave us (the power of the Holy Spirit.) If we are to truly live in freedom from sin and in the power of love we are encouraged to remain in that anointing.
Will you live today as a child of God and not as an orphan any longer?