This post comes courtesy of our Rector Emeritus, the Rev. Joe Vitunic
No longer a slave to fear. I am a child of God!
This is a text I (Pastor Joe Vitunic) received recently from my daughter Laura. Nathan is her son, my grandson:
This song is one of Nathan’s favorites and has become one of my favorites as well! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f8TkUMJtK5k
Thinking it might be helpful to you, here is my response:
“This is one of my recent favorites also! I’m encouraged that good theology is being passed down through the generations! Also good taste in music. 😉
As you know, I’ve been meditating a lot on the Fatherhood of God and what that means to me. One of the verses that speaks deeply to me goes like this: “Fear not little flock for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32 RSV)
The song is a celebration of the truth of this scripture, that God is our Father and we his children. Therefore, there is nothing to fear.
He is our Abba. Jesus calls us his “little flock,” a term of great endearment. And it is our Father’s “good pleasure.” Not just his pleasure but his good pleasure!
Another translation renders it, “Don’t be afraid, little flock, because your Father delights in giving you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32 CEB)
God delights in us and in giving us good gifts, even the best of gifts, his kingdom! I can’t quite wrap my mind around this all together, but I know it is unimaginably good.
This gift is mine is mine. And it is yours. There is no greater privilege than to be called a child of God.
So, being called by Jesus one of his “little flock,” assures us we are dear to him and to the Father. As such, there is no reason to fear. We are heirs, with Jesus, of the Father.
What belongs to the Father belongs, and what belongs to Jesus belongs to us. This, of course, is only by grace so no one can boast.
So, as I meditate on this I quote it this way to myself, “Don’t be afraid little Joe, for your Father delights in giving you the kingdom.”
You might try the substitution yourself.
No longer a slave to fear. I am a child of God!”
Begging for further reflection:
1) If we are his flock, then he is our Shepherd. What are some of the ways that Jesus, being our Shepherd, characterizes the nature of our relationship with the Father?Suggestions: Psalm 23, John 10, Ezekiel 34:23, Psalm 28:9, Isaiah 40:11, Matthew 9:36, etc
2) What does it mean to be given “the kingdom” by our Father? Suggestions: “the kingdom parables” of Jesus.
3) What fears of ours have no place in the kingdom of our Father? What can we do about it?
4) What does it mean to be an heir through God as Paul writes,
Therefore, you are no longer a slave but a son or daughter, and if you are his child, then you are also an heir through God.” (Galatians 4:7 CEB)
What implications does being an heir of God (“joint heirs with Christ” – Romans 8:17) have for us and how does that apply to our lives today?
O the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! Romans 11:33 RSV