This is a little late in coming because we were trying to get our home back in order after being gone for two weeks. Its gets harder when you have more clothes to wash (2 little boys and 2 weeks of travel). I definitely thought this was the richest chapter yet and it met the rest of my life as I was reading it. Here are my top thoughts from reading chapter three.
1. Sometimes I wish I had said something. I would never think to refer to the Incarnation – and all the parts of the whole – as an “exquisite mystery”. Maybe this is why I like Elyse so much. She knows how to pen her thoughts in beautiful packages. I was telling my Mister tonight about how the Incarnation seems to be getting more mysterious to me the more I read this book and think upon that doctrine. What parts are more of a mystery to you? The fact that he was God? Or the fact that He was human. For me, its that He was human. But, for me, all I need to know is written in the Word so that I might know Him – and in eternity I will know Him more.
2. This is specifically for moms: do you ever feel like no one knows what your days are like? Like no one really knows you or your trials? Like no one knows what you go through loving on your kids each day (and pulling bubble gum out of hair and peeling spaghetti noodles from the wall and scrubbing marker off of the baseboards? This was very encouraging to me: Jesus lived his whole life in faithful obedience – all 33 years – not just the three in public ministry. “if our understanding of his work pauses after a brief celebration in Bethlehem to resume only at his baptism in the Jordan, we rob ourselves of the comfort that his whole life of isolation, obscurity, and obedience are meant to bring us. Generally ignored, he toiled without complaint, suffering humbly. He wasn’t merely treading water. Jesus’ life of ordinary (yet spectacular) obedience changed everything. He needed to live a full life of joyous obedience in order to save us. He grew from blissful innocence to tested holiness in the crucible of daily life.” How is God shaping you and perfecting you in the crucible of daily life. My mentor and I have been talking about this the past few days. Knowing there is great reward in the daily – seek faithfulness and the glory of God.
3. God’s Word is reliable. Elyse says that – we can believe it. We can believe in the Bible’s reliability not because Elyse says it – but because God says it. Jesus knows the Word. He spoke the Word while He was on earth. God-breathed was the Word that he was quoting in the wilderness – and in many other instances in his earthly life. God gave it to us as a means to know Him – let us love this reliable word.
4. “The Lord Jesus had a practiced habit of exclusive worship of his Father.” Another one of those quotes I wish I had penned. What do you in the ordinary? How do you live your life daily? Do you wait for a trial to come before you pray? Do you wait until you need an answer before you read the Word? Do you wait till you have a Bible study lesson to prepare before you dig into the Scriptures? When trials come – what do you have to cling to? If you are in the practiced habit, like Jesus was, of daily walking with God, His and our Father, then your life will demonstrate that as you face the trials that all of use are going to face in this life.
5. “Recall the perfect obedience of the Son in your place and go on your way in faith.” There is an age old discussion about faith and works. What the Bible clearly says is that salvation comes through Christ alone – by faith alone (and that faith is a gift not of ourselves) and then we are to walk in the good ways that God has for us. So often though as believers, when we are failing and struggling in sin, our minds battle with our assurance of salvation. If we constantly look inward and look to ourselves and our good works as a measure of our salvation – we will never be sure of it. Because we will always be failing. We must look to, rely upon, and rejoice in the perfected work of Christ.