family of god

“God does not show favoritism but accepts men from every nation who fear him and do what is right.”
Acts 10:34

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“The Introduction” by Nathan Greene, ©, All Rights Reserved, Used By Permission.

Family of God

Almighty God, our Father, created the cosmic universe and transformed a water-covered blob of matter into Planet Earth, throbbing with plants and animal life.

On the sixth day of Earth’s creation week, He created humans in His own image as His very own children in the family of God. To further enhance the lives of His children, God crowned creation week by reserving the seventh day for His sons and daughters to rest from physical labor and to socialize while communicating with their Father and worshiping His divinity as the Creator of all life.

“The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.” Mark 2:27

Unlike phony gods of stone and meaningless ritual, our Father God is alive, caring for His human children with love and justice. We respond by worshiping Him with love, not fear. When we call to Him in prayer, He will answer.

Humans were created as man and woman with the ability to sense the emotion of love with an inherent attraction to be drawn together, jointly experiencing the joy of love.

Our Father God endowed a human couple with the power to create their own human families. At the birth of their very own child, human parents experience love in action and a clearer glimpse of the boundless love of our heavenly Father for the human children He created in the family of God.

True love’s range of emotions is boundless. When the jealousy and hate virus inspired Cain to kill his brother in a moment of passion, the parents’ love for their sons would have crushed their hearts in agony.

Our Father in heaven likely shared that sorrow of a lost human child. Think of the unimaginable agony the Creator of the universe endured observing the torture and death of His only begotten Son, Jesus, the sinless big brother of all human children in the family of God. And think of the joy in heaven when even one sinful child of God repents and, like the prodigal son, returns to the welcoming open arms of our Father in heaven.

Human parents were given a glimpse of the Father’s love for them and the agony the Father must have felt giving up His only begotten Son to crucifixion in an effort to welcome home the prodigal children to the family of God. Jesus Christ is our sinless, big brother who has demonstrated the Father’s perfect love in action.

John the Revelator describes last day saints as those who “obey the commandments of God and remain faithful to Jesus.” Revelation 14:12 The commandments were carved on stone to help a band of largely illiterate, newly freed slaves understand God’s perfect character of love and justice. The ministry of Jesus lived that perfect family love in daily action. The Apostle Paul illustrated the specific character traits seen in the daily life of a child of Father God who has turned from sin with the power of the Holy Spirit and keeps the commandments by living lives radiating God’s love.

“Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Galatians 5:22-23Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience… Forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Colossians 3:12-13

“And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13

Children of God our Father, walking daily in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, discover assurance of abundant living and a peace that surpasses all understanding.

“God is love, and
We’re His little children.
God is love,
We would be like Him.

“Tis’ love that makes us happy,
Tis loves that smooths the way,
It helps us mind,
It makes us kind,
To others every day.”

A Children’s Hymn

Drawing by Lynn C. Johns, granddaughter

A devout child in the “Family of God. 

Jesus, God’s only begotten Son, endured the agony of being nailed to the cross with spikes driven through the bones of His hands and feet, a sacrificial act of love to save humans from the penalty of sin. Scars on His hands and feet remain forever, reminding us of His victory over death and an invite to find life eternal by obeying “God’s commandments and remaining faithful to Jesus.”

Rough, eczema-ridden hands graced the loving touch of Ruby Charlene Morrison Johns (1892-1973), a devout follower of Jesus. Old-timers, fellow Union College students, remember her fondly as the “prettiest girl on the campus.” As beautiful as she was, her heart overflowed with God’s love, bringing joy to all fortunate enough to walk in her presence. 

Those dear hands testify of her devotion to her faith, her pastor-  husband and three, strong-minded sons. Shaping their characters  with patience and love, discipline would typically consist of sitting one of those sons down with words beginning with the phrase, “You are such a good boy, I’m surprised you didn’t think before…” Then would follow the positive spin: “I’m sure you won’t do that again…” The wrap-up be a prayer, hug, kiss on the cheek finishing with a mother’s emotional assurance, “I love you…” A harsh word was never spoken.

Ruby Charlene’s life was a walking sermon on parade!

A lifetime of sacrificial service to her family, with hands too often dipped in water washing dishes and clothes, left its mark on her once soft, delicate hands. Grateful sons look forward to holding those hands, restored to their softness again, and thanking her at that future “Grand Reunion,” planned by God for them, and all others who obey His commandments and remain faithful to Jesus.

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