Jan 3, 2017

Children of God

1 Jn 2: 29 - 3:6

If you consider that God is righteous,
you also know that everyone who acts in righteousness
is begotten by him.

See what love the Father has bestowed on us
that we may be called the children of God. 
Yet so we are.
The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
Beloved, we are God's children now;
what we shall be has not yet been revealed. 
We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him,
for we shall see him as he is.
Everyone who has this hope based on him makes himself pure,
as he is pure.

Everyone who commits sin commits lawlessness,
for sin is lawlessness. 
You know that he was revealed to take away sins,
and in him there is no sin. 
No one who remains in him sins;
no one who sins has seen him or known him.

"Children of God" is the term used by St. John today to describe our relationship to the Almighty.  We are his children, not by biology but by spiritual relationship and because of the birth, life, death and resurrection of his own Son, Jesus Christ.  Because Christ has come our relationship to the "Father" has changed from separation because of sin to reconciliation and healing because of the grace of redemption.  

As we come to the end of our Christmas season later next week, it is good to remind ourselves of what that birth has meant.  It changed everything about who we are and who we are in relationship to God.  That is, the intimacy we share with God, the love we all share in, the expectations he has about us and for us, is like a parental relationship.  As parents share life and love with their children; as parents have certain expectations of how their children behave and interact in the world; as parents love their children even though that child may at times disappoint them, our Father God is all the more like a parent and we share in that intimacy along with the Son and the Holy Spirit.  

Isn't that wonderful.  We are "strangers and aliens no longer" as Paul reminded us in another passage.  And as Jesus said to his own Apostles the night before he died - "I no longer call you strangers but now I call you friends."  

We know from human experience what it means to be a child, many know what it means to be a parent, and we all know what it means to have friends.  All exponentially the more in our relationship with God as we share in the gift of his own divine life.  

So, what does it mean to you to be a child of God?