God’s Spirit Beckons

Beans: “I won uh eee God.”

Translation: I want…to eat…God.

What??

If you don’t know my two year old, you are missing out. We call her Beans. Why? Well…because a friend of mine walked into our daycare one morning and said “Well hey there Everbeans!” That’s all it took. (Chesnei, if she ever gets mad at you over this just remind her that you will be her saving grace if she ever wants to learn how to do makeup!)

To describe Beans…let’s just say that she started walking before she was 8 months old. Not only was she walking, she was also wearing size 3-month clothing at the time. Broke her arm at 12 months. She’s a featherweight and only has about 2 pounds on her 8 month old brother. For about 9 months (while getting teeth) she was a biter. I lost count of all the times I had to apologize to other kids or their parents for this! She is the middle child. She is ferocious. And holy cow she’s stinking fast. Like this little blond bullet darting across our house. I’m excited to see what she’s like as an 80 year old woman (ya know…if I make it to 104..106…whatever it would be). untitled-1-33

So she wants to eat God? This may be a tad impossible and a tad morbid, but let’s roll with it. What can come from this. Oh tons of Brooke thoughts, of course!

First off, I have raised my children in church. I am beyond thankful I live in a country where this is possible. I am thrilled that these children have a community of people who love them. I am stoked that they will have plenty of generous people to buy their 4-H candy bars (if that’s still a thing) so I can attempt to avoid eating (and having to pay for) entire boxes of chocolate goodness. But…it also makes me nervous!

I was raised in church. I can’t remember ever not going. I am thoroughly in love with Jesus and hope you reading this have experienced His goodness as well. I am blessed that I get to experience Him beyond Sunday morning!

So why am I nervous? Because once upon a time a college boy I knew was bold enough to ask a college girl he just met, What’s your story? Why are you a Christian? Her response to him hit me hard and has stirred in my little spirit ever since.

I was raised in church. 

Period.

That was it.

I pray often that my kids would yearn for Jesus. That they wouldn’t just decide to go to church on Sunday mornings to check it off their list, but that they would have an authentic relationship with Him, desire to worship Him wholeheartedly and walk in His goodness!

I know I normally keep these posts fairly short, but here’s to Wednesday Night Words and some Romans 8!

1-2 With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved. Those who enter into Christ’s being-here-for-us no longer have to live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud. A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death.

3-4 God went for the jugular when he sent his own Son. He didn’t deal with the problem as something remote and unimportant. In his Son, Jesus, he personally took on the human condition, entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity in order to set it right once and for all. The law code, weakened as it always was by fractured human nature, could never have done that.

The law always ended up being used as a Band-Aid on sin instead of a deep healing of it. And now what the law code asked for but we couldn’t deliver is accomplished as we, instead of redoubling our own efforts, simply embrace what the Spirit is doing in us.

5-8 Those who think they can do it on their own end up obsessed with measuring their own moral muscle but never get around to exercising it in real life. Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them—living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Focusing on the self is the opposite of focusing on God. Anyone completely absorbed in self ignores God, ends up thinking more about self than God. That person ignores who God is and what he is doing. And God isn’t pleased at being ignored.

9-11 But if God himself has taken up residence in your life, you can hardly be thinking more of yourself than of him. Anyone, of course, who has not welcomed this invisible but clearly present God, the Spirit of Christ, won’t know what we’re talking about. But for you who welcome him, in whom he dwells—even though you still experience all the limitations of sin—you yourself experience life on God’s terms. It stands to reason, doesn’t it, that if the alive-and-present God who raised Jesus from the dead moves into your life, he’ll do the same thing in you that he did in Jesus, bringing you alive to himself? When God lives and breathes in you (and he does, as surely as he did in Jesus), you are delivered from that dead life. With his Spirit living in you, your body will be as alive as Christ’s!

12-14 So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There’s nothing in it for us, nothing at all. The best thing to do is give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go!

15-17 This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!

18-21 That’s why I don’t think there’s any comparison between the present hard times and the coming good times. The created world itself can hardly wait for what’s coming next. Everything in creation is being more or less held back. God reins it in until both creation and all the creatures are ready and can be released at the same moment into the glorious times ahead. Meanwhile, the joyful anticipation deepens.

God’s Spirit beckons! There are things to do and places to go. (Romans 8:14)

This goes beyond Sunday morning! Praying for you who are reading this…and for Beans to stop desiring to “eat God!”

Bye friends! 🙂

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3 thoughts on “God’s Spirit Beckons

  1. I wrote a paper on this when I took a social theory class in college. I researched how many teens don’t actually know what they believe in or claim to believe in. It’s so crucial and important kids and teens are invited and encouraged to explore their relationship with Christ, and what it truly means to me. There needs to be testimonies, answered prayers, moments peace, and so much more. All of these we can then share with those who ask, “What’s your story?”

    Beautiful post!

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