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Thursday, November 10, 2016

the Four Loves: the Great Eagle

Today we shoo the Vulture off the old man with our Father Abraham.  Today we look up and see God soaring high in the heavens.  Today, like Frodo and Sam, we are plucked off Mount Doom and rescued on the wings of the Great Eagle.  
“For Yahweh’s portion was his people,
    Jacob the share of his inheritance.
He found him in a desert land,
    and in a howling, desert wasteland;
he encircled him, he cared for him,
    he protected him like the apple of his eye.
As an eagle stirs up its nest,
    hovers over its young,
spreads out its wings, takes them,
    carries them on its pinions,
so Yahweh alone guided him,
    and there was no foreign god accompanying him.” (Deut 32)

There was no foreign god accompanying him.  Approval lusts for, well, approval.  Everyone is a foreign god!  We don’t know who we are until someone else tells us.  We don’t know we have worth and value until the people around us, our chosen gods tell us we’re okay.  If we have the right peer group.  If the bosses think we’re special.  If our mentor is pleased with us.  If our wife loves us.  If our husband makes us feel pretty.  If our children are our friends.  We lust after identity and we let other broken people tell us who we are and if we’re good.

"Come with me if you want to live."
Again, the problem is not what you lust for, it’s who you’re trying to get it from.  Whom you are feeding on.  God created you for relationship, but in Himself, He alone is the Bread your soul craves, He alone can tell you who you are.  When we broke faith with him we lost more than our identity.  We lost our purpose, our freedom we had in His love and care, of whose we were.  We became slaves of sin, which the Word likens to being slaves in Egypt, but God says, “‘You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and I brought you to me. And now if you will carefully listen to my voice and keep my covenant, you will be a treasured possession for me out of all the peoples, for all the earth is mine, but you, you will belong to me as a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’”  (19)

And it’s really that simple.  How do we, Lo-Ammi, Not-my-People, vultures feeding on the same dead flesh as our own, seeking our approval and identity from other sinners  become the Children of God?  We are called.  We are saved.  The Eagle came for you…”He came to his own things, and his own people did not receive him. But as many as received him—to those who believe in his name—he gave to them authority to become children of God, who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of a husband, but of God.” (John 1)

“So then, brothers, we are obligated not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh, you are going to die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all those who are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry out, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself confirms to our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, also heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer together with him so that we may also be glorified together with him.” (Rom 8)

i’m not saying it’s going to be easy or fun, at least not all the time.  “Bore on Eagles wings” is a euphemism.  Yes, some days it will feel amazing, effortless, solid and joyful, like flying, but not always, being born on those wings means sharing in what happens to those wings, shairng in Christ's sufferings, "Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered, and being perfected, he became the source of eternal salvation to all those who obey him, being designated by God a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek." (Heb 5)  It still means walking a waterless, trackless, empty desert learning to trust this God as Father, only being given what we need when He thinks we actually need it and not before, learning to become priests and a holy nation, ambassadors, a testimony of the Living God our Father, a precious treasure.  We must pray, read the Word, join in worship and fellowship, seek Him!  See Him!  Feed on HIM!  But now we do it not to BECOME, not to gain approval, but BECAUSE, we are chosen, called, named and made holy in Jesus already!  God names you first what  you are and then guides you through the process of making you that thing.  If you have heard the Eagle's voice and answered his high and lofty call, sanctification is becoming what He has already made you: In Jesus, fully accepted, fully loved, fully approved.  

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