Scott Hoezee

Read: Galatians 4:1-7

God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” (v. 6)

Few of us grew up in households with servants, much less with the kind of live-in servants you can see on TV shows like Downton Abbey. But when you peer into such a world, one thing is abundantly clear: the upstairs/downstairs distinctions are firm. The servants who live downstairs are permitted into the upper levels only in order to serve dinner, clear plates, dust furniture, and so forth. They are not part of the family. When their tasks are finished, they return to the lower regions. It would be a foolish butler who, after finishing work, would come back upstairs, plop down in a chair by the fireplace, and begin a casual conversation with the lord of the manor!

There are even a handful of common expressions that reinforce social pecking orders. “Mind your place!” “Remember yourself!” “Who do you think you are?”

Among the glorious pieces of good news that make up the gospel is that whatever our status once was before God, we are now part of the divine family. Maybe we felt like slaves before God once upon a time. But no more! Now we have the boldness to address God as “Daddy,” as “Abba, Father.” When we come to the “upstairs” of life to sit down and talk with our heavenly Father, we will never hear God say, “Mind your place!” but instead will always be lovingly invited in with “Have a seat, my child.” —Scott Hoezee

Prayer: Dear Father, thank you for your embrace of grace.