Week 16 Word: Beloved
Week 16 Text: 1John 3:1-3
Written by: Whitney Putnam
“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.” (1 John 3:1-3 ESV)
“Right foot. Left foot. Right foot. Left foot.”
I watched a young dad coach his daughter up a ladder. He was calm, standing confidently by her side. He was quiet, allowing her the joy of participating. He was assuring, giving her peace as she tried something new.
She listened and moved as he spoke. She knew she could trust him; it was apparent by her obedience and willingness to believe the directions he gave her. His gentleness sent her into a new adventure, an adventure that allowed her to tackle something unknown and feel confident as she went higher up the ladder.
Elated she jumped to the top. “Look Dad!” Her ponytail shone in the sunlight and bounced in the wind.
And I sat stunned.
Beloved, we are God’s children. You and I, we are His beloved daughters. And He is standing next to us gently coaching us into new heights and unique adventures.
If you have been His daughter for years or merely minutes, you know that He calls us into unexpected territory. Just like 1 John 3:1-3 reminds us, we are to be strangers in this world. “The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know Him.” And further, “we are to purify ourselves” not because it makes Him love us more, but because we understand how truly loved we are.
God has called us to high standards of living, most certainly our biggest adventures. To hate the world and its desires:
“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in Him.” (1 John 2:15 CSB)
To love our enemies:
“But love your enemies, do what is good and lend expecting nothing in return.” (Luke 6:35 CSB)
To be strangers in this world:
“Dear friends, I urge you as strangers and exiles to abstain from sinful desires that wage war against the soul.” (1 Peter 2:11 CSB)
To take bold steps of faith:
“And climbing out of the boat, Peter started walking on the water and came toward Jesus.” (Matthew 14:29 CSB)
To have faith:
“But let him ask in faith without doubting.” (James 1:6 CSB)
To clothe ourselves with compassion and humility:
“Therefore as God’s chosen ones, holy and dearly loved, put on kindness, humility, gentleness and patience…” (Colossians 3:12 CSB)
One could easily get overwhelmed with a long list of verses. Merely waking up in the morning could send us into a tailspin, if our focus became a list of everything God has called His beloved children to do.
But let us not forget the privilege of being a beloved child:
We are the daughters of a perfect dad–a dad who is standing beside us, allowing us to climb independently while listening to a voice that sounds like one of rushing waters (Revelation 14:2).
“Come, my daughter; let’s adventure today. Right, left, right, left. Right foot, left foot.”
And confidently we climb to unknown heights–heights unachievable by us, but perfected by Him.
1. Go ahead and sit outside for five minutes. Set an alarm if you’d like. Close your eyes and listen to the birds, the gentle rustle of the wind and let your mind wander to a good Father teaching His daughter how to walk. Right foot, left foot. How does this make you feel? Confident? Assured? Open your eyes and spend five minutes journaling about this experience.
2. Hold out your wrist and draw a cross. As you move throughout your day, let this cross be your guide (your coach) as you order your to-do list and priorities. Let the cross be your gentle whisper all day long.