Live With Eternal Perspective Podcast Episode 135 - May It Be As You Desire, God
Welcome to the Terri Hitt – Live With Eternal Perspective Podcast
Episode #135 – May It Be As You Desire, God
Thank you for entrusting and investing your precious time with me to seek, find, and follow Jesus together as we live with purposed eternal perspective.
In their unique ways, each of my daughters continue to teach me daily about the beauty of a humble heart. Through their words and actions, they allow me to catch a glimpse of God working in them. As I watch them, observing their very different surface personalities, I receive such joy. Although they have unique personalities, both girls love Jesus and make me think about the heart of Mary, mother of Jesus. They always purposely try to please and obey my husband and me. Not in ways that are only because they know they are supposed to, or feel they have to, but because they want to be pleasing to God. I consider it my honor to teach them to yearn for God and to desire to please Him above anyone else. If they do so, the overflow of their love for Him will cover the rest of us.
Just as Mary modeled Christ in her words to Gabriel in Luke 1, “May it be as You Desire, God,” is what Christian parents want to hear and see from their children. Yet our reasons for desiring that make all the difference.
My children are not to worship me, but Him. When they do, I see the beautiful benefits of their faith-filled and maturing life. It makes me ponder all the qualities God saw in Mary that made Him plan for her to mother the Savior of the World.
I believe there were three keys qualities God considered necessary for the task He called Mary to (and of course, God knew she would possess). Christian parents must lead our children to the feet of Jesus in order to see these same qualities living in them.
1. Mary trusted God.
2. Mary’s life praised God.
3. Mary submitted to God.
These are the qualities we want to mentor for our children and see them willingly carry in their life.
Psalm 27:4 says, “One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in His temple.”
Wouldn’t you love your children and grandchildren to live with a heart attuned to the Lord like this?
We hold such great purpose in the life of children! It is our sacred privilege to intentionally instruct our children and grandchildren to:
1. Love God with a humble heart.
2. Fear God with reverence.
3. Respect God’s holy commands and instructions.
4. Serve God with a humble heart.
5. Obey God with respect for His sovereignty.
Luke 1:26-38 says, “In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be borne will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.”
Every time I read this passage of verses, my heart is tender for the love and reverence Mary offered God in a moment that must have been incredibly confusing or startling. Can you imagine being in her position? Even though she was just a young girl, she did not worry or wonder at what was going to happen, how it would come to be, or why God had chosen to reveal such a plan as this to her. The words, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord, let it be to me according to your word,” must have sounded preciously obedient to God’s ears. He had chosen Mary because He knew her reaction would be worthy of the privilege and promise He planned.
Maybe it is so special to me because I was an unmarried pregnant teen. I know the shame and fear that a young girl faces. It brings me humble joy to read her reaction and imagine myself in her shoes.
Luke 1:46-49 says, “And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name.”
Mary was honored in life with the distinctive role of being the mother of Jesus. This honor required enormous sacrifice and suffering. Mary no doubt suffered deep pain along with the privilege of raising Jesus. Mary’s submissive obedience to God allowed her to humbly accept this position with grace and trust without demanding glory or answers. It is not about her. It is about Him.
The Bible is full of character studies and stories that we can draw great wisdom and knowledge from and impart to our children. Let’s take a look at another person God found pleasing.
1. Solomon petitioned God.
2. Solomon heard God.
3. Solomon strayed from God.
4. Solomon returned to God.
2 Chronicles 1:1 says, “Solomon the son of David established himself in his kingdom, and the LORD his God was with him and made him exceedingly great.” 2 Chronicles 1:7-12 says, “In that night God appeared to Solomon, and said to him, “Ask what I shall give you.” And Solomon said to God, “You have shown great and steadfast love to David my father, and have made me king in his place. O LORD God, let your word to David my father be now fulfilled, for you have made me king over a people as numerous as the dust of the earth. Give me now wisdom and knowledge to go out and come in before this people, for who can govern this people of yours, which is so great?” God answered Solomon, “Because this was in your heart, and you have not asked for possessions, wealth, honor, or the life of those who hate you, and have not even asked for long life, but have asked for wisdom and knowledge for yourself that you may govern my people over whom I have made you king, wisdom and knowledge are granted to you. I will also give you riches, possessions, and honor, such as none of the kings had who were before you, and none after you shall have the like.”
1 Samuel 16:7 says, “But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.”
This is exactly what God does. He peers without restraint or obstruction straight into our heart. Solomon’s prayer was pleasing to God. Solomon recognized the value of wisdom. His plea in that prayer seemed obedient, trusting, submissive, humble, and genuine. Because Solomon did not ask for wealth, possessions, riches, or honor, God answered and granted much wisdom to Solomon, as well as lavishing unrequested blessings on him.
As we study the life of Solomon, we see that one critical piece of wisdom we can learn from his story is the importance of carrying more than wisdom. Wisdom without understanding can be very dangerous.
Proverbs 4:5-13 says, “Get wisdom; get insight; do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth. Do not forsake her, and she will keep you; love her, and she will guard you. The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom, and whatever you get, get insight. Prize her highly, and she will exalt you; she will honor you if you embrace her. She will place on your head a graceful garland; she will bestow on you a beautiful crown. Hear, my son, and accept my words, that the years of your life may be many. I have taught you the way of wisdom; I have led you in the paths of uprightness. When you walk, your step will not be hampered, and if you run, you will not stumble. Keep hold of instruction; do not let go; guard her, for she is your life.”
Solomon recognized the value of wisdom and requested it from God, pleasing our Heavenly Father immensely. Yet through the life and choices of Solomon we learn that we need more than wisdom alone. Wisdom without a humble heart for God or an understanding of what God requires to be wise will not keep us humble and reliant on our Heavenly Father.
Without understanding and insight from God, personal wisdom may become worldly knowledge rather than godly instruction. We may end up yearning for and following personal, physical, and earthly desires instead of seeking what God desires.
Just as Solomon strayed far from what God would deem wise, we are liable to make the same mistakes without keeping our mind, heart, and soul tied in reverence and submission to God.
Solomon seemed to return to God in his later years, perhaps by viewing and utilizing the wisdom God endowed to him in his younger years through an eternal perspective. Through his story, we learn that we must teach our children to seek God’s wisdom and the qualities that build and sustain His common sense and uphold His commands.
There are so many characters in the Bible that we can draw from, but the next I want to discuss in this podcast episode is the best mentor of all.
The perfect mentor in every area is Jesus.
John 13:1-17 says, “Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. During supper, when the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going back to God, rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. Then He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around Him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to Him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.” Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with Me.” Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!” Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.” For He knew who was to betray Him; that was why He said, “Not all of you are clean.” When He had washed their feet and put on His outer garments and resumed his place, He said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you. Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.”
In this short passage we see deeper into the heart of Jesus.
God already knows every sin we have ever or will ever commit – and He loves us regardless. The love of Jesus is far-reaching and perfect, casting out fear and infusing us with hope and mercy that only comes from Him.
In this story we understand that Jesus is speaking privately with His disciples and sharing His final instructions. Jesus is preparing them for His death and resurrection because the Lord knew both events would greatly impact and alter the foundation of their beliefs and lives forever.
Because Jesus was the sinless, perfect mentor and model servant for God, He set a clear and wise pattern for His disciples to follow. Just as He does for us.
In the passage we read, Jesus humbly wrapped a towel around His waist and began washing feet as only a servant would do. When we witness God in the flesh as a servant doing what was considered one of the lowliest chores, we (with the great hindsight of the Holy Word) see genuine and humble love and obedience that should compel each of us to be willing to serve in the same ways, honoring and glorifying God.
Jesus showed how to treat others and how to obey God in a way not easily understood by the disciples As I stated earlier, it is only through our Bible study and hindsight that we are able to begin to comprehend the meaning and motive behind this act of Christ.
With influence and intention far greater than requesting that the disciples extend kindness toward one another, Jesus modeled how to give and grow His truths through the world and into eternity before He left this earth. What a gift God extended to us! Our human minds cannot begin to fully fathom and we have an added blessing of so much to teach us.
Jesus exposes the keys to the Kingdom of God for us to use to unlock the hearts of our children for Him. What a precious privilege!
As we strive to build the Heart of Jesus in our children, we must remember our mentor Jesus and humbly show Him to our children in all we are and do.
Jesus served the Father and others.
Jesus loved the Father and others.
Jesus taught the Father to others.
Jesus exposed truth to others.
Jesus was obedient to the Father in all ways.
Jesus was a hearer and a doer of the Word.
Jesus sacrificed for the Father and each of us.
Jesus drew nearer to God with eternal purpose.
As we see the simple truths of who Jesus is through Scripture, it makes it obvious to parents that we must purposely provide opportunities to produce identical characteristics in our children.
As we look to our own lives, we must assess where we are so that we are prepared to parent with confidence through connection to Christ.
Do you humbly submit to God?
Do you listen for His voice?
Do you keep areas of your life private or closed-off from God?
Do you trust God’s plans?
Where can you trust God more?
How do you plan to draw nearer to Him?
Do you expose more of your fleshly character qualities or more of Christ?
How are you purposely showing Christ to your child daily?
Are you reading and studying the Bible?
Are you reading and studying the Bible with your child?
Do you pray for your children daily?
Are you asking God to show you what you must do to bring yourself and your children or grandchildren closer to Him?
Although these may seem like a lot of questions, these are prompts to propel each of us to what we should consciously be doing for the children God has gifted us to parent for Him; for the people He surrounds us with. As we learn to depend on Him every moment as we live, He will guide us in the ways we should move and mother for Him. His desire is that we succeed in every way He calls for us, especially in the way we live and parent.
Dear Heavenly Father, how great You are! You know our every thought, word, act, and motive. Yet you love us with an astounding and everlasting love deeper than we can imagine. You know our faults and failures, yet You entrust us with Your treasures, the children You give to us. Father, please enable us to become the parents You desire in a timely way that allows us to parent with godly wisdom, understanding, knowledge, and love from You. May the hearts of our children be turned to You. May they accept Christ as they complete the purposes You have established for them with complete trust in You. May their love for You and faith in You shine forth to bring others into Your arms. May our children bless You with joy and delight with the love and faith they exhibit and mature with purposeful intention. Father, thank you for entrusting each of us to raise Your children. May our hearts delight You and help us to know how to complete this privilege You have entrusted to us. Enable us to love You with fullness of heart and may the hearts of our children seek You in the same way. Impress Your commandments in not only our hearts, but the hearts of our children. May we think of You and speak of You through each day together as we entrust our future, their futures, to Your capable hands. In the precious name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
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