The Granddaughter has a name for it. She calls it the “God Star”. She generally colors it in yellow. She sets it on buildings. She sets it floating in the sky. Yesterday, she set it attached to a huge pink and yellow heart with two giant Easter eggs on either side of it, and the beginning of a rainbow overhead (she got sidetracked). Seriously, you have to love how a child sees things. Maybe it is because I taught school for over 40 years, or maybe it is just because I am hopeful for the next generation, or maybe it is because my father wrote me one letter in my whole life and in it he said: “And believe it or not, most of that light comes from the children”. I only know I want to see things as my Father(s) see things.
“Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.” Matt 18:3-5
God has been bringing the “God Star” to my thoughts a lot the past few days. The news, obviously, has been a catalyst. The reports of crucifixions in today’s world seem unthinkable. Even be-headings takes on a nightmarish quality as I try to pinch myself awake. I pray. I look up. I wonder. I read more and more of the WORD. And…as I hug the Grands ever tighter, I pray some more that I will “become like little children” in all things.
Most blessèd, most glorious, the Ancient of Days…
Our minister has spent over a month teaching us to pray using the pattern that Rabbe Yeshua set before us in Luke 11. You know – “The Our Father” one – the one we were taught to memorize on our knees with our parents – the one we recited every Sunday in church – the one that comes to mind whenever we are fearful, sad, angry, in pain. The one we say by rote without even thinking about what those words mean. It is just something we say, and sometimes, sadly, it has no meaning at all as we look at the clock and wonder how soon we can leave church and get busy with the important stuff in the rest of our day. However, times are changing, and the words are becoming more than just words.
“Forgive us our sins, for [as] we also forgive everyone who sins against us…” Lk 11:4
I’m smiling because we are only half way through our study in this model prayer, and we started it a month ago. With the pastor’s words in my head, I thought a lot about what Jesus was saying in this small section of how He was teaching us to pray. Asking God to forgive me for my sins is a daily occurrence. Although I’ve gotten control of many things, there are oh so many more to go. Resentment. Doubts. Fears. Envy. Old trespasses, grudges, hurts that I keep imagining or nursing deep in my memory banks. Forgiveness of those who sin against us is not as easy as just saying the words aloud or to ourselves. Course, Satan is only too glad to remind us by using a smell, a slight, a piece of music, a picture to stir our emotions and amplify those old hurts right back to the fore front of our mind. None of any of which is easy for me.
“Almighty, victorious, thy great Name we praise.”
However during church, this visual popped in my head. Forgiveness is literally my granddaughter’s “God Star”. Vertically, Our Father forgives us – totally – completely – repristination. It is a unending, A wide, golden ray that stretches all the way from Him, breaking the sin barrier of this fallen world, and blessing us in its encompassing, golden waves. Our forgiveness becomes another golden ray, slightly less wide because our faith is still weak, that reaches horizontally to those around us on this plane. If we forgive others as He forgives us, the “God Star” is complete, and we become the blessing to the world as Rabbe Yeshua modeled it for us. Once again, it is not easy – especially when it is someone we love that hurts us. Yet, isn’t that what we did when we allowed Christ Jesus to be crucified? We hurt Our Father deeply, and still – He wipes it completely away with His Grace. Can we not do likewise?