Being a dad is a lot of fun. Watching your kids change and grow is exciting and even a little sad at times. When Andrea, our four year old, first started telling me that she didn’t want me to hold her anymore I was bummed.
Now it’s Hailey’s turn. Her favorite phrase currently goes something like this, “No, I can do it.”
This is followed shortly by the sound of her struggling and straining to climb into her seat…
Then after a long wait we hear, “I did it!”
As parents we are proud to see her doing things on her own, however this little charade reminds me of how humans interact with our heavenly father.
God is always for us, never against us and yet sometimes we act and react as if he’s in the way of us really enjoying life.
We look at him, get frustrated and say with our actions, “Hey God, I can do it! Step to the side and let me give it a shot.”
We call it free will, charting our own path, or going it alone. Truthfully though, all these euphemisms are covering up the truth. We are trying to earn God’s love and attention.
Look at this great passage from Galatians chapter five:
Galatians 5:3-5 (NLT)
How foolish can you be? After starting your Christian lives in the Spirit, why are you now trying to become perfect by your own human effort? Have you experienced so much for nothing? Surely it was not in vain, was it?
I ask you again, does God give you the Holy Spirit and work miracles among you because you obey the law? Of course not! It is because you believe the message you heard about Christ.
Paul was writing to a group of new believers who had gotten caught up in the idea that they had to earn favor with God through ritual and rule following.
Hailey’s favorite phrase serves to remind me not to do the same thing with God. I know he’s for me. I know he loves me. I know I’m not capable of getting myself in right standing with him.
Thanks to Jesus (Grace personified) I have access to him.
In the end it’s not me who calls out, “I did it!”
The truth is Jesus did… And I’m forever changed because of that.