I’m a Child of God, Now What?
I have a feeling that perhaps the first song I learned as a child was “I am a Child of God.” I can’t remember the first time I got to sing the famous children’s hymn, but I just recall that I’ve been singing it ever since. At a young age, I knew what the words meant, but I did not know what the song wants to tell. Yes, I am a child of God. Now what?
Fast forward a few years later, my father’s gentle reminder gave a lot of meaning to the song I have loved since I was a little kid. I was 18 years old during that time; I was quite an assertive, independent (or so I thought) girl. A couple of friends invited me to our high school reunion and suggested that I should attend since I was the school president during our senior year. I knew the reunion would start late and end at a much later hour. Nonetheless, I still asked permission from my father.
After hearing out my reasons why there was a need for me to come to the said party, and after considering my justifications, my wise father simply asked me “Are you sure you’re going to be safe?” I am pretty confident I rolled my eyes when I said “Papa, I am 18. Besides, I am with my friends.” He eventually allowed me to go with the condition that I should be home by 11 PM. However, before I left the house, Papa shouted out these words I will never forget: “Giulia, remember who you are!”
And oh, how I needed those words. The party was in a dark place, drinks were served, a few of my friends offered me cocktails. Even before 11 PM came, I was already eager to go home. My father’s simple reminder told me I shouldn’t stay long in that place.
It has been a few years since that experience of mine, but my father’s reminder, four simple words, about my real identity created a difference. I am grateful for an earthly father who is sensitive enough to say the right words. My thoughts then turn to a loving Heavenly Father who, I’m sure, told us the same reminder before our journey here on earth. “My son, my daughter, remember who you are.”
Yes, we are children of God. But, what does it really mean to be one?
He knows us. He knows our past, present and future
An excerpt from Jeremiah 1:5 says ” Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee…” Our Father in Heaven knows exactly who we are. He knows our weaknesses, our strengths, our fears, our dreams, our longings, everything. He also knows about our pasts, our current situation, and the future events that will unfold before us. Because we are His children, He has a plan for all of us.
We are loved
I found an interesting quote while I was browsing through Pinterest. It says “There isn’t a person you won’t love if you really know their story.” My mind suddenly thought about Heavenly Father. Like what was mentioned above, He knows everything about us. He knows what we went through and what we will go through here in this life. I am sure that His heart goes out to us every single day. His arms of mercy is surely extended to us because He is the only One who truly, completely understands what we individually face here in this life.
We will be tested
When I was still a student, I thought that because I am a child of God, things will be easier for me especially if I keep the Lord’s commandment. It turned out I was wrong. I was one of the struggling Accounting students in our department. People in our class tagged me as the “most religious” person in the room, but why was I suffering and why were these classmates of mine who were not as religious as I was succeed?
Knowing that you are a child of God does not guarantee that things will be easy for you. In fact, you will be tested. I remember the experience of Pres. Dieter F. Uchtdorf when he was still in training. Like me, he wondered why despite his obedience to the Lord’s Law of Health, he was still the “weary” one among the group. Later, he realized “eventually I learned that God’s promises are not always fulfilled as quickly as or in the way we might hope; they come according to His timing and in His ways.”
As children of God, we are not exempted from trials and challenges. The Lord knows that one of the ways for us to grow is to be tested. But if we remember that we are a child of God, each tests is a reminder of the Lord’s desire for us to grow better.
We will be comforted.
However, like all loving fathers we know, our dear Father in Heaven extends HIs love and comfort especially in times of great heartache. Yes, every time we struggle, we can feel that life is quite unfair. But if we remember that we are sons and daughters of the Lord, we will be confident that He will not leave us comfortless. I love this scripture verse in the New Testament that says “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” (Matthew 7:11) His love for us is infinite. He will comfort us.
We have to choose to love Him.
Nowadays, people hold on to this popular notion that since we are so loved by the Lord, we can commit disobedience against Him and still be okay with it. After all, He loves us, right? Unfortunately, this is not true. Our decision to love Him is evident in our choice to obey the commandments He has given to us. When Christ was on the earth, He told His disciples “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15) Like our earthly parents, I’m sure it is heartbreaking for our Father in Heaven to see us disobey and neglect the commandments He has given us. One of the best ways our love can be shown is through obedience to Him. If we are loved so much by the Lord, isn’t it just right to love Him in return?
I am grateful to know that I am a child of God. I am thankful of the gospel that helps me understand my real identity. Sure, life here on earth is not easy, and it can sometimes be full of tests and challenges, but as long as we “remember who we are,” we will have the strength to move forward. I know this to be true.