You know that angst you feel sometimes in your heart? That weird tension? A sort of homesickness.
That angst is God’s grace in your life. It reminds you that we’re not finished; that there’s more to come.
Check this out:
Paul just set a few verses back that I was adopted, but now he tells me I’m waiting for my adoption? It’s weird how God talks about us as if we’re already kids and then turns around and talks about us as if we’re ‘waiting’ to become sons.
But hidden here in this verse, He explains what he means: I’m waiting for the redemption of my body. That’s the part of my adoption that’s not complete yet.
All of Romans has been talking about this tension we have as Christians – our inner man – our new creation made of us and His Spirit longs for the right and true things of God, but we have this pesky flesh, that is constantly tugging on us and calling us to the things of the world.
God reminds us that there is a world coming where our sinful flesh will melt away and be replaced with a redeemed body. We’ll finally get flesh that is on board with the spiritual reality in our hearts.
Imagine that, a world where you can sincerely worship God with all that you are without any sort of hangup or snags in your heart.
My friends are adopting a kid from Haiti right now. I say ‘adopting’ as if it’s an ongoing process, but listen to them talk and you’ll hear that in their minds, he’s their son. It’s done. The papers are signed, the decision is made: he is their kid. The adoption is finalized in that sense, but in another sense it is still pending. They are still waiting for him to come home.
Guys – you and I are like that sweet little boy in Haiti. We have a deposit – God’s Spirit inside of us – letting us know that we belong to Him, reminding us of what is true, but if we take a look around then everything we see will seem to tell a different story.
He is already their son, but that is a truth designed to lead him to long for a physical reunion – not be content in an orphanage. No one would encourage him to be satisfied where he is because he has the knowledge that he’s adopted. That’s crazy talk.
And the same is true of us.
The reality that you belong to God will prompt us to want more of Him.
The truth that you’re already His kid is not written into His Word to make us satisfied with our spirituality, it’s written to make us press on in hope that there will be a day when our flesh will be conformed to His will.
We will finally get to love and worship Him as His Spirit in us currently does. We won’t be hindered by our idolatrous flesh. We won’t be distracted by temporal things. We will run flee, flinging our arms wide in un-abandoned worship of the only One worthy of worship.
That sounds like Heaven to me. Because it is.