I have noticed over the years that the word used to describe children that I despise more than any other is this: willful. It suggests that they are overbearing, when quite often it means that they are not willing to blindly agree with adults. They ask questions. They push limits. They choose to exert their God-given will instead of always following instructions.
This is not to say that children do not need to be taught respect, have limits, or follow directions. However, children also need to be taught how to change the world – and change always requires discomfort, prodding, and pushing the limits that should not be.
Have you ever considered that we humans are actually quite willful towards God? We want what we want. When we want it. To back up what we believe. To keep us comfortable. To protect our rights.
What do all these statements have in common: they are all about us.
In reality, however, God desires us to be will-full – full of God’s will. What is God’s will then?
Scripture has taught us. We just usually don’t want to listen.
God’s will for humanity is that we would care for others as much as for ourselves. It is that we would live into the Love in whose image we were made. It is that we would continue Christ and God’s ministry here on earth – ministering to the sick. Bringing tangible good news to the poor. Teaching children and women to think for themselves and be their own people. Welcoming the stranger and the alien. Empowering the disenfranchised. Speaking hard truths to power. Bolstering the silent. Mending broken hearts and shattered bodies. Declaring the year of jubilee when all debts are forgiven and the world returns to what it was meant to be.
That list keeps going.
We are meant to be full of God’s will. Actively living it in our lives. Seeking to sow the seeds of love that the world so desperately needs.
This is some of what we will talk about this weekend as we continue in our #summersermonseries on the Lord’s Prayer. Hope to see you in person or through our wondrous modern technology!
Blessings, Pastor Janie