Years ago, I always attempting to turn you onto Brennan Manning's book, "Abba's Child". It is a very uplifting and enlightening book and I still encourage you to read, if you haven’t. And for those of you who have read it, I suggest you read it again ;o)
There is something else you might enjoy: "The Boy Who Cried Abba: A Parable of Trust and Acceptance" and another book from Brennan Manning called "The Furious Longing of God".
The first time I read "Abba's Child," it was at a time when I felt broken and hurt. I had become embarrassed and ashamed of myself because I had entered a period of rebellion and loss. I tried to hide from the One who truly loved me. Like Adam and Eve, I cried, “I heard your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked hid.” (Genesis 3:8-10)
Manning’s book helped me return to my first-love and again freely accept my identity as a child of God and find the rest I so much needed. That is the kind of thing the Holy Spirit does. He always simplifies our relationship with our Father and Brother Jesus. It is the Holy Spirit who teaches us to say, “Abba, Father.” He brought me a renewed realization of how the Holy Spirit works in our lives.
This phrase, “Abba, Father,” refers to an oriental custom regarding the adoption of a child. Until the “adoption papers” were signed, sealed and delivered by the adopting father, the child simply saw this man only as a father. He didn’t have any right to call him Abba, meaning “my.”
However, as soon as those papers were signed, registered and sealed, the child’s tutor presented him to the adopting father — and for the first time the child could say, “Abba, Father!” As the father embraced him, the child cried, “My father! He’s not just a father anymore. He’s mine!”
Bringing us into our new relationship is the work and ministry of the Holy Spirit! He teaches us about Christ. He presents us to the Father. And He keeps reminding you, “I have sealed the papers. You are no longer an orphan — you are legally a child of God! You now have a very loving, wealthy, powerful Father. Embrace him—call him ‘my Father.’ I have come to show you how much he loves you! He loved and wanted you!”
Our cry should be one of exceeding joy and thanksgiving. The Spirit in us cries out, “You are an heir, an inheritor of everything that Jesus won! Rejoice!” What an inheritance we have! Our FATHER is the wealthiest in the whole universe! Don’t shy away from him; he is not mad at you. Stop acting like an orphan who is poverty-stricken, without joy and spiritual victory. You are not abandoned! He will never leave you alone! Relax and enjoy him!
Not only that but the Holy Spirit is there with us during moments of confusion and suffering.
The Holy Spirit’s mission is to comfort Christ’s bride in the absence of the Bridegroom. “He will give you another helper who will be with you forever” (John 14:16). “The helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything. He will remind you of everything that I have ever told you” (John 14:26).
A comforter is someone who “soothes in a time of pain or grief” — someone who eases pain and sorrow, brings relief, consoles and encourages. But I like this definition from the Greek: “One who lays you down on a warm bed of safety.” Wow! During the cold, dark night of your soul, he lays you down on the soft bed of his comfort, soothing you with his tender hand.
By calling the Holy Spirit the Comforter, Jesus made an infallible and dependable prediction. He was predicting that His followers would suffer discomfort, and would need comfort — that there would be a lot of pain and suffering among his disciples in the last days.
The Holy Spirit brings comfort by reminding you that he lives in you with all the power of God inherent in his being. And that is why you can say, “Greater is he that is in me than all the world powers combined — greater than all demon powers!” God sent the Spirit to use all his power to keep you out of the clutches of Satan—to lift your spirit, drive away all depression and flood your soul with the love of your Lord.
“We not only have a hope of future joys — we can be full of joy here and now even in our trials and troubles. Taken in the right spirit these very things will give us patient endurance; this, in turn, will develop a mature character, and a character of this sort produces a steady hope, a hope that will never disappoint us. Already we have some experience of the love of God flooding through our hearts by the Holy Spirit given to us” (Romans 5:3-5).
Oh, Father, we have every reason to rejoice because we have received your promised gift of your Spirit. He is indeed our comfort and joy. He has also become our Counselor in times of distress; our Helper in moments of weakness; our Intercessor when we need strength; our Advocate who continually intercedes for us; encourages us when we face an enemy; the Holy Spirit, Whom you have sent teaches us everything. And He reminds of everything that Jesus has told us (John 12:26-37).
(I send out messages like this each morning in emails, and if you are interested in receiving them, send me your email address and I will add you to the list: Mail List. However, you can also find these messages at: Thought For The Day)
I do thank you for your gifts
It is your faithful and continued support that makes these messages possible.