“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry Abba, Father.” Romans 8:15 (KJV)
Abba Father. We have heard this name used in songs, and in sermons. It is one of those names that we think we kinda understand what it means, but we really are not sure about it in a specific way.
Abba is an Aramaic word that most closely translates to our word for Daddy. It implies a close, intimate relationship, as well as a high level of child-like trust. Living amidst the current turmoil of these days requires Christians to turn to the One who is Abba Father.
Last night, the beautiful City of Lights, Paris, France, was viciously and brutally attacked by the evil known as terror. Several different venues and areas of the city were attacked by gunfire, explosions, and hand grenades, carefully articulated to occur at precisely the same time. The reports began coming in late in the afternoon here in the United States. And with them, came shock, horror, heartbreak for those who were targeted. The last I heard this morning was 158 dead, including the 8 perpetrators, and approximately 200 injured, at least 80 of whom are critical. And French authorities predict that the death toll will go higher.
How do we process this information? How do we continue to live our lives, perform our daily tasks, enjoy going out in public? How long before we experience these kinds of orchestrated attacks in our own land? Well, don’t forget, we have already experienced several. September 11, 2001, is the largest, most horrific. We lost the Twin Towers and all those lives in NYC, and the plane that crashed into the ground in Shanksville, PA, when heroes stood up to the terrorists and fought back, that they would not use the plane for further horror. And the Pentagon was tragically hit as well. Don’t forget the senseless horror of Fort Hood a few short years ago. There have been many that have been labeled “isolated” incidents; the beheading of the woman in her place of employment last year; the random shooting of a young soldier outside of a recruiters office, etc. Yes, we have experienced terror much like our Parisian friends experienced last night.
We go on because Jesus is Our Hope. God is our Abba Father. He promised from the beginning of time as we know it to be our protector, our deliverer, our strength, and yes, our hope. We must put forth effort, now, to apply all that He is and says to our individual and corporate lives. He has not told us these things for no reason, He has taught them to us that we will receive what He has given. He brings hope eternal, that no matter what may befall us here on this earth, we are assured that we will land well. He will guide us and lead us and watch over us, and we will one day be safely at home with Him. No man can harm a child of God; any evil he attempts will not succeed.
Jesus offers us hope with grace. His grace is His glory, His might, and His power. He will cover us with His grace if terror should enter our lives. Terror is evil, and grace drives it away, putting up a barrier that cannot be broken. It comes when we need it, and it brings with it peace and the ability to see Abba Father, and to experience grace beyond the terror.
“I sought the LORD, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.” Psalm 34:3
Are you often afraid of life’s events, things that are beyond your control? Have you asked your LORD to extend His grace to you?