Galatians 4:6. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”
Yesterday we looked at The Source of Life– the Spirit of the Son who grants Jesus’ life to us. Today let’s move into The Signs of Life: Crying Abba.
The Signs of Life
What is the overflow of the life of the Son in us? What does the Spirit of the Son produce in our hearts? What is the sign of Christ indwelling life? Cries to our Abba.
Paul, writing a letter to Greeks in the Greek language, uses an Aramaic word here. Why would he do this? Because Aramaic is the language of Jesus. Abba was Jesus’ normal daily address for the Father. Abba is NOT the child’s “daddy.” But it is a an address of intimacy and respect. It is the familiar address of an adult son to his father. Paul has made it clear in Galatians that we are not little children anymore, watched over by the tutor. Instead we are adopted adult sons. And now we can address God as our Abba, like Jesus did with his Abba.
It is the Spirit of the Son that is doing the crying in Galatians 4:6. The Spirit is crying from within us. He is screaming for us and also through us. The Spirit cries to the Father by the son-ship of Christ. This is the power of the full Godhead at work in you. We don’t just whisper to our Abba or speak in muted tones on rare occasions. We CRY Abba. We scream. We yell. Outwardly and inwardly. Constantly.
Crying to God is one of the most important things we can learn to do as Christians. Have you learned how to cry to Abba? Or do you bottle it all up? Or maybe you carelessly vent it all out onto other people? Do you take out your sorrows and hurts on others, leaving broken relationships in your wake?
Or do you cry out to Abba? In his darkest moments, Jesus did.
Mark 14:36. And he said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.”
This is one of the greatest benefits of covenant son-ship. We have a Dad that we can go to no matter what life offers. Every fear, every doubt, every struggle, every sin taken to him. Our Dad is always there, always available, never too busy, never distant, never apathetic to our lives.
Like a good Father, he is not bending his will to ours. He is bending our will to his. Because his will is perfect and mature. So crying to God is surrendering to God. It is grasping desperately to our own dependence upon the Father- just like Jesus did in his humanity in the garden. Crying to our Father is faith. It is the opposite of works. It is the cry for grace. As Dr. Robert Kellemen puts it, “Crying out to God is our admission that God has our attention, that God has us.”
Is your life one of crying out to God in desperation and faith? Or are you still under the delusion that you are in control? Do you stifle your emotions and hurts? Do you “get over it” and “move on” without ever confronting yourself and God in the midst of your faith journey? “To live is Christ” grants to us the glorious joy of self denial. The road to healing. The open door to our Abba that allows us to see his goodness and trust his grace. It gives us the freedom to cry. To scream if we need to. To call out for mercy, understanding, and countless second chances. All from a Dad who, like all good dads, wants to share life with you. Will you honestly share yours with him?