Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Orange Moon Tuesday, June 14, 2022 "The Family"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

"The Family"

     I did not know about the family.

    "For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in Heaven and earth is named" (Ephesians 3:14-15).

   When I first became a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, I had limited knowledge of what it all meant.  I knew a little about forgiveness, faith, obedience, Heaven, and God's presence and involvement in our lives.  I did not realize, however, that I had been spiritually born into a family.  God had blessed me with a wonderful mother, along with uncles, aunts, and cousins who also served as His gifts to me.  However, I had no frame of reference for having a father (my dad died when I was 2), and I was an only child with no brothers or sisters.  So, I did not know the blessedness that awaited my heart in the fellowship of "the whole family in Heaven and earth."

   "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments, as the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life forevermore" (Psalm 133:1-2).

   I now know about the family.  Indeed, I cannot imagine these last 47 years without the fellowship of believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.  I think of those whose faces and names have faded from memory, but whose influence still blesses my heart and life.  I think of others I do remember with much gratitude, but with whom I no longer have opportunity for fellowship.  I think of Christians who still grace my life with the Lord's goodness, light, life, and love (including all of you).  I think of the fact (and shudder) that if I had not become a born again believer in the Lord Jesus, I would not have known nearly every person I have known, and now know, throughout my adult lifetime.  The entire scope and measure of my experience has flowed from that day on September 17, 1975 when God so graciously entered my life by His grace in Christ.  I think about such things, and a great sense of wonder stills my heart as I seek words that somehow begin to be adequate in offering praise and thanksgiving to our Heavenly Father for so immeasurably great a gift.

    I cannot find those words.  The gift has been, and remains, too great.  I think of the cost that made such grace possible.  Like all of God's blessings, the fellowship of brothers and sisters comes to us by way of the cross where the Lord Jesus suffered and died to make possible our spiritual birth into "the whole family of Heaven and earth."  At Calvary, our Savior suffered forsakenness by God so that we might never be forsaken.  Our Lord abides with us forevermore, including His presence known through the hearts of others in whom the Spirit of Christ lives.  Little wonder no words seem adequate to convey the appreciation for which God is so worthy.  "His greatness is unsearchable" (Psalm 145:3).

      Finally, I consider that eternity promises even greater glories in the presence of our Lord and of each other.  "So shall we ever be with the Lord" (I Thessalonians 4:17).  "Wonders without number" await us as we see the Lord Jesus face to face, as we perfectly worship our Heavenly Father, and as the Holy Spirit dwells and walks in us in unfettered life and liberty (Job 9:10).  Those wonders also await us in the presence of each other as the glory of God glimmers in every face and flows through every heart.  "Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father" (Matthew 13:43).  I did not know about such things when I first came to know the Lord.  I did not know about the family.  I know now after so many moments of grace in the presence of our Father and of His children.  And I know that forever promises far greater glories to come with Him and with each other.  Words adequate to praise and thank Him?  They don't exist.  How could they in the light of such love, grace, mercy, and joy made possible by so great a cost, so great a sacrifice?  So, we bow our hearts and ask the Lord to look therein and see our inexpressible appreciation and adoration for His love in the Lord Jesus, and His love as known in the family.

"Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding, abundantly above all we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end, Amen."
(Ephesians 3:20-21)

Weekly Memory Verse
     Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.
(II Corinthians 2:14)




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