Thursday, August 9, 2012

It Must Run in the Family

My brother's, his daughter's, my father's, and my oldest daughter's strong hands

My younger sister ready to launch my niece with her strong hands (missed the hand pic)
Last week I spent time with my extended family in beautiful Navarre, Florida (between Pensacola and Destin).  Eighteen of us shared a beach house for the week.  Many laughs, yummy food, aching muscles from getting beat up by waves, late nights watching the Olympics and playing games, itches from the blood sucking mosquitos, and sunburns from extended time around the pool and seaside, were shared by all.

Our family vacation included a long awaited highlight.  A few years ago, my brother told me he had a daughter, but none of our family had ever met her.  My brother and his wife had flown to California to meet her.  Now, the rest of our family finally hugged our twenty-year-old granddaughter, niece, or cousin, Yasmine.  From the moment we saw her, stories began.  Over and over we discovered similarities using the term, "It must run in the family."  From physical traits, including brown eyes, curly hair, and thick hands (see pics above) to allergies and food likes, Yasmine definitely fit into the family.  She had some younger pictures with her almost identical to my sister Kelly and my niece Ashtyn.  Crazy!

After saying, "It must run in the family," several times, it made me think of my heavenly Father.  As children of the Father, we have handed down characteristics. 

I Peter 1:3-11 says, "3 By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. 4 And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.
5 In view of all this, make every effort to respond to God’s promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.

8 The more you grow like this, the more productive and useful you will be in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But those who fail to develop in this way are shortsighted or blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their old sins. (New Living Translation) (emphasis mine)

As children of the Father, we share: 
1)  His Divine Nature.
This doesn't mean we are gods, but according to verse 3 we share his nature because of  "HIS DIVINE POWER", and verse 4, " HIS GLORY AND EXCELLENCE", not ours.  

2) His Gift.
We don't earn this nature.  According to verse 3, we have RECEIVED, and verse 4 says, "he has GIVEN US."  We can only live godly, God- reflecting lives because of the gift of new life through Jesus, conquering the power of sin on the cross.   

3)  His Love. 
We reflect God's loving character, according to verse 5, when we respond to God's promises.  He grows (verse 8) us in:(verse 5) moral excellence, knowledge, self control, patient endurance godliness, brotherly affection and LOVE FOR EVERYONE.   

4) His Plan
As we grow, according to verse 8, we are more productive and useful in the knowledge of Jesus.  The more we grow in the knowledge of  Jesus and His character, the more we become like Him.  The more we become like Him, the more we know His plans for us.

Are you a child of God the Father?  Want to be?  YES
If you are, do you reflect the Father?
And, are you growing into one that reflects Him more?

Linked to Cornerstone Confessions, A Holy Experience

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