And it is in this very human act of Jesus humbling himself in repentance that his divinity is exposed. It is in this moment that Jesus hears the voice of God say you are my beloved child in whom I am well pleased! Who among us doesn’t long to hear those words…to be proclaimed “my beloved…in whom I am well pleased?” And the fact of the matter is that we are at our truest selves the “beloved of God”. And yet we struggle with accepting that identity, perhaps because we feel unworthy, too broken or too unimportant in the scheme of things to truly be “the beloved of God”. We live our lives based on who we think we are. We make decisions and choose to do or not to do, based on who and how we identify ourselves in relation to the world around us. So coming to embrace the reality that you are the “beloved of God” greatly impacts your life. It is in and through our identity as the “beloved of God” that we become “grace” to the world around us.
In accepting this identity we are transformed and all our relationships are transformed as well. When we begin to live out of the identity of being the “beloved of God” we begin to see the world differently and we begin to act toward ourselves and others differently…with less judgment, less selfishness and with more mercy. We begin to live with more openness to self and others and we become filled with more gratitude and generosity.
Embracing that we are the “beloved of God” changes not only how we see ourselves and how we see others, but changes what we give value to in life and what we believe to be important or unimportant in life; what we are willing to live for and what we are willing to die for.
In the midst of all of the hatred and division, the racism and misogyny, the anti-immigrant and anti-refugee and white supremacy that swirls throughout our nation, it is so vitally important to come to terms with who we are at our core, who God created us to be! Only then can we move away from the hatred and division, the racism and misogyny, the anti-immigrant and anti-refugee and white supremacy that cripples us as individuals and as a nation.
Standing in that place of grace, being the “beloved of God” changes everything! Do I accept my true identify as God’s beloved child? What self-image might I have to let go of to more fully accept being the “beloved of God”…and how might it change my life? And after the mayhem and death that we saw happen at the Capitol this past week, may each of us pray for the grace to accept our truest identity as a beloved child of God, and by this may we be the change this nation and the world so desperately needs!
God’s most abundant blessings to you all in this New Year!