2 min read
03 Sep

It’s funny how things change from year to year. I guess it’s similar to reading a passage of scripture and when you go back and read it later, it has a whole different meaning. That’s what happened to me with this prayer.

O God, by whom we are redeemed and receive adoption, look graciously upon your beloved sons and daughters, that those who believe in Christ may receive true freedom and an everlasting inheritance. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever.

In the prayer, we remind God (and ourselves) that we are redeemed and adopted. The prayer also gives an attribute of each: when we are redeemed we receive true freedom and we receive adoption, we receive everlasting inheritance. However, we cannot receive adoption unless we are redeemed.

I’ve been thinking about what it means or how is should feel to be redeemed. Let’s pretend that someone commits a crime and is sentenced to prison. At the end of their sentence, they are taken to the front gate of the prison and set free. While the crime is not erased, his punishment for the crime is satisfied. This person has been redeemed, or bought back, their own freedom. The cost of their redemption was their time in prison.

I also thought about the day that this person is set free. They now have a choice to make, they can start over and take a new road in life, or they can go back to where they came from.

All of us commit crimes, called sins, which are committed against God. We learned through the whole of the Old Testament that no matter how many laws, kings, or prophets God sends our way, there is no way to earn our freedom from our sins, but God had a plan for our redemption. He sent his Son. It was Jesus who redeemed, or bought us back. The price he paid wasn’t time in prison, he paid with his own life.

We now have a choice to make. We can go back the way we came, back into sin. Or, we can accept what God offers. Not only did Jesus pay the price for our redemption, but when we ask for forgiveness of our sins, we don’t have a record because our past is erased. We are also given the opportunity from God to become His children.

“Look with grace (graciously) upon your beloved sons and daughter,” we pray. Imagine God wanting a family picture, one of all of his children. Where would you think Jesus would be in the photo? When God offers us everlasting inheritance, we are equal heirs with Jesus. In that family picture, Jesus is not on the side looking on, He is in the picture with us. He chose to lay down his life to bring us back to the Father.

The cross of Christ is the image of our true freedom. Because of the cross we no longer have to be slaves to sin. When we are no longer slaves, we are free to be children of God because adoption cannot be bestowed onto slaves. We have true freedom from sin because of the cross and the closer we draw the cross that is ours, the more ready we are to freely give our lives back to God.

Because of the cross we receive an everlasting inheritance. Everlasting, aeterna in Latin, means endless and eternal. Everlasting also means that our inheritance began before we were baptized, it began with the beginning of time. As sons and daughters of God, now is the time to start spending our inheritance. Now is the time to give away God’s love. Now is the time to spread joy and kindness. Now is the time tor remember that we are heavenly creatures walking on earth. Go ahead, be lavish, spend God’s goodness all you can. There will always be more.

Thanks for praying with me,

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