My ten-year-old son and I are reading through the New Testament together this year, and when he reads today’s chapter (Galatians 4), because it’s complicated, he’s going to be like, “What in the poop is this talking about dad?” And what’s ironic is that, in a sense, he can understand it better than we adults can.
When I was in Israel last year, I was walking in Nazareth one day when I heard a local boy say something. He was probably around the age of my son, and he was whining a bit. But the thing that stopped me in my tracks was the word he said: “Abba.” He was trying to convince his father of something, and whined, “Abaaaa.”
I had read the word in the Bible, and even referred to God with it a few times, but it never felt like a real word until that moment. I stood there thinking, “It’s a real word. Little kids still call their father’s Abba. It’s what they say when they’re telling their dads they love them, or asking for something, or sharing their hearts.”
In today’s reading we’re told that we’ve been given “child of Abba” status. We get to be the kids of a daddy who wants to hear that we love Him, and wants us to ask for things, and with whom we can share our heart.
If you had decent parents, do you remember how great it was to be ten years old? To not have to worry, to receive guidance and wisdom, to not have to earn love. As children of Abba, that’s what we have – as adults – so (as Galatians 4) points out, why in the world would we turn our back on that and live out our Christianity in a different way?