Thursday, October 27, 2016

Your Tightest Circle

My dad rocked. Really, he did. Even as a teen I liked my dad. We may have argued about music and how loud sleepovers should be, but there was much more good going on between us then ugly. My dad and I were close.

My dad had two girls and we often asked him, "Don't you want a boy? Are you sure? Because we could always adopt a baby brother." Dad always assured us that he was perfectly happy with his two girls. 

When I was older, I realized that my dad was a bit exclusive. My dad's circle was simple: me, my sis and Mom. Dad loved my friends and cousins but they were not in the circle.

I didn't think my dad could have ever imagined having a tight bond with any other like he did his three ladies.

And then my husband entered the picture. For so many years I believed him when he said he really didn’t want a son. But now I almost wonder, because he likes my husband so much. Now my dad, MY dad, will side with MY husband on most subjects. And I smile and shake my head, happy and slightly amazed that my dad has taken another into his circle.

There is something peculiar that parents have for their kids. Something exclusive. It is such a good thing. Our kids have special access to our hearts, to our inner circle. We will stick up for them and root for them unlike any other. 

My circle is me, my husband and my kids. 

Did you know that God had a similar circle? There was Daddy God, Jesus and Holy Spirit. They were tight. Since the beginning of time. Since before the beginning of time, it was them in a tight circle, those three.

God said, “Let us make man in our own image.” Let US. Those three, together before the beginning, creating, working together. A tight circle.

When Jesus came to earth he wasn’t acting alone. We didn’t just get Jesus, we got the package deal. Because they are a tight circle, where one is, they all are.

Jesus said over and over again, “Me and the Father, we are one!”
“If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.”
“The Father is in me and I am in the Father.” 

Can you see the intimacy? Can you see the tightness of their circle? Not only are they close, but they are intertwined.

And then The Three do the unexpected. Those Three open up their compact little circle and motion for me. Their arms are gesturing, their expressions jolly.

Who ME?

Yes, me! And YOU too!

Who are we to be linking arms with The Three In One? Who are we to be included in such an exclusive club?

And yet, this is what we read in John's account of Jesus' last hours.

After three years of hearing Jesus teach on this tightness that he experiences with the Father, his followers were finally seeing it too. 

That is when Jesus drops this:

“You will know that I am in my Father, 
and that you are in me and I am in you.”  
John 14

The same wording Jesus had been using for his own relationship with Father.

I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love.
I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn't confide in his slaves. 
Now you are my friends, 
since I have told you everything the Father told me. 
You didn't choose me, I chose you.
John 15

I'm not saying I will ask the Father on your behalf
for the Father himself loves you dearly 
because you love me and believe that I came from God.
John 16

In the labored conversation between Jesus and the Father preceding the cross:

I pray that [all of my followers] will all be one, just as you and I are one- 
as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. 
And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me. 

I am in them and you are in me. 
May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that 
you love them as much as you love me.
John 17

Could this be true? Could Daddy God love me as much as loves Jesus?
Am I really welcomed into their tight circle?

Don't we humans do this all the time? Don't we open up our homes and our families and our tight circles to include another and another? If you are a parent to more than one child, then you have included another in your circle

Never was this more obvious to me then when we brought kids into our home through adoption. Outside the circle there was another who needed inclusion, who needed the protection the circle offers. And we dropped our linked arms for a moment to draw another in. 

The reason we can include others in our tightest of circles, is because it has been done for us. 

Once upon a time, I was on the outside.
Once upon a time, you were on the outside.

And then we were invited into the tightest and grandest of circles.
Those Three and me. 
Those Three and you.

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