S is for…Servant, Savior, Son of God!
It’s another long list! If you’re like me, sometimes it can be overwhelming to take in so much at one time. In that case, I pray that one or two of these will sink deep into your heart. The last two resonated most deeply with me.
1 Corinthians 1:25 “For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.”
God is all-powerful. He is stronger than the power of sin and strong enough to overcome the difficulty of any circumstance we might face. I am also reminded of the verse where Paul says that in his weakness he is made strong because of Christ’s strength. I am so glad that we don’t have to be strong on our own, but have a God who gives us all the strength we need.
Son of God/Sacrifice
1 John 2:2 “He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.”
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Being a mom has taught me so much about parental love, and also about sacrifice. I had read the story of Abraham and Isaac numerous times, but it never touched me as much as when I read the version from the Jesus Storybook Bible to my sweet little son, while I was on maternity leave. I was touched so deeply by Abraham’s faith – and challenged by it – wondering if my actions would be the same as his. Though I don’t love perfectly, as God does, I know that a parent’s love runs deep. That God would sacrifice His only son on our behalf should never, ever become less than amazing and mind blowing. I know for me, someone who has been a Christian since I was a little girl, it can become “normal”. It shouldn’t.
Isaiah 12:2 “Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.”
Habakkuk 3:18 “Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my savior.”
In order to provide for our salvation, God sent us a savior. Isaiah has never physically seen Christ, and though he did prophecy about Christ, he didn’t understand the full plan for His coming to earth. Still, Isaiah knew two very important things. 1) He needed saving, and 2) God provided salvation (through a savior). We should recognize these truths daily – they never stop being true. We don’t just need God to save us at the time of our conversion – we need Him to save us from the messes we are each and every day. And He will!
2 Thessalonians 2:13 “But we ought always to thank God for you, brothers loved by the Lord, because from the beginning God chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth.”
In my 2nd “R” post, I mentioned that God was a refiner. He purifies and refines us. This process is also known as sanctification. God uses the gift of the Holy Spirit to change and transform us. He sanctifies us to make us less like us and more like Him. Some days I don’t feel like I’m being sanctified. I still feel like a giant mess who makes sooooo many mistakes. However, I’m clinging to the promise that “He who began a good work will carry it to completion.” Thank God!
Philippians 2:7 “But made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.”
My husband is the most wonderful servant I know. He has such a heart for blessing others, usually by doing more “behind the scenes” things that need to be done. He’s an inspiration to me, as I tend to prefer the jobs that get the praise and thanksgiving. I’m thankful for my husband’s example, and especially for the example of Christ. Since He chose to humble Himself and serve others, how much more should we do the same?
Psalm 23:1 “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.”
I love the imagery of a shepherd leading his sheep. Though he has a rod, it isn’t used to beat the sheet for punishment to mistreat them. The rod is used to gently guide the sheep in the direction they need to go. God does the same with us. He is a good shepherd who uses the rod of discipline to guide us into holiness and the life that is best for us. I also love the second part of this verse. A good shepherd takes care of the needs of His sheep. They don’t go hungry or thirsty. They aren’t left out alone in the cold. Similarly, God takes care of us. He provides for our needs, that we may not be in want.
2 Corinthians 12:9 “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”
As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, sufficient is one of the words that stuck out most to me as I wrote this post. I don’t always (or, honestly, often) live like it, but God is enough. He is. Really. Whether we have nice houses (or a house at all), fine things, or good health – God is sufficient. He is all we need. He is the one we were made to be in relationship with, and our hearts were made to long for Him and for heaven. Why can’t we understand and live like this. (That is not a rhetorical question, I really do struggle to understand why I know this in my head but don’t live like it, and welcome comments on the subject). My prayer today is that I (and we) would live lives that reflect our belief that God is sufficient. He is enough.