The God who is love meets all our needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. But this does not mean that our relationship with God is entirely need-centred?

Jesus wasn’t driven by meeting his own personal needs nor the pressing needs of those around him.  He was rather continually turned towards his Father looking at what his Father was doing and responding to him.  In Gethsemane he struggled over the Father’s will, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me.” But he came through, “Yet not what I will, but what you will.” He totally surrendered to his Father’s will and purpose.

Jesus gives the Spirit to us that we may live in trustful obedience to Abba as dearly loved children.  The Spirit cries Abba Father within us and we cry Abba with him. That was the agonising cry that came from Jesus’ heart in Gethsemane as he struggled over doing Abba’s will.  Out of that agonising struggle he emerged with firm and quiet resolve to be obedient to Abba even unto death on the cross. We now cry Abba with Jesus as those who are led by the Spirit into a life of trustful obedience to Abba.

We may slip into thinking that Jesus gives the Spirit simply to meet our personal needs.  The Spirit fills me with peace and joy and makes me  really happy.  What we need most is for God’s Spirit to take us out of ourselves so that our lives are centred in the Father in union with his Son.  In this way, all that we are flows out of loving and joyful response to the Father in the freedom of the Spirit.


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