Day 27 – Romans 8:1-25
What I love about this first part of Romans 8 is that it basically summarizes our month together. If you can, read this in the New Living Translation as well as in whatever version of the Bible you normally use. I think the clarity of the NLT in this section is superb. We were lost. SO lost. We couldn’t obey, couldn’t stay true, even to a loving God who was for us. And so Jesus came and died for us so we could live with God forever because He never, ever gave up on us or stopped wanting us to be with Him. That’s the amazing gospel story. That is good news indeed!
One of my favorite parts of Romans 8 is the verse where we are reminded that we can now call the holy, righteous, mighty God … Abba. A tender, intimate name like “Papa” or “Daddy.” This is amazing. We’ve been given the right to be His little kids, running into the throne room and plumping ourselves on His lap.
What was your father like? Was he stern? Perhaps distant or just too busy? Was he a little bored with your stories at times? Maybe he was a delightful father. Maybe he was a monster. Human fathers come in all stripes and varieties. But of this I am certain. Your father was far from perfect. He had his crabby days. He had his selfish moments. There were times when he most assuredly let you down. For some people, even the word, “father” carries a triggered anxiety with it.
So let’s just walk away from whatever sin patterns our human fathers inevitably had. Cuz we also are sinners with our own sin patterns. Instead, let’s imagine the Best Father Ever. The one who always has time for his kids. The one who wants to hear your stories in all their glorious and mundane details. The one who forgives when you sin. Who wants what is best for you. Who provides and protects, nurtures and loves. That, my friends, is your Abba-Father.
Do you remember waaaay back to the beginning of the internet and AOL? Some of you do. You know who you are. Well. Back then we needed to have sort of an internet name. I chose foreverabbas for mine. I kind of want that on my tombstone. 😊 Because of all the ways to identify myself, that to me is the very best. I am, through no merit of my own, forever Abba’s. And that brings me a joy that surpasses all else.
My verse: Romans 8:6 “So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.”
My response: This affirms that I am to a large degree responsible for what I think. I f I allow sinful thoughts free reign in my mind, I’m killing all that is good and noble in me. But if I turn to You, Lord, begging You to turn my bitter thoughts or angry thoughts into prayers and forgiving thoughts … I’ll be at peace. Father, I’ve lived this out both ways, and I truly do want You to control my mind. I yield, Spirit of God, to Your wisdom, love and grace. Please be in charge of my mind.