It's what He wants me to do and live and be. I'm nervously excited.
Last night I read the passage about the practice of two goats to my son. In the days of Moses the Israelites began a ceremony in which one goat was sacrificed as a burnt offering and the other was banished into the desert to die after having been bestowed with the sins of all God's people. My boy, the funny-deep one laughs.
"That goat must have just fallen over, Mom."
I chuckle, confused. "Huh?"
"Those people had a lot of sin. They even lied about the golden calf they worshipped. 'Uuhh, they gave me their necklaces and this thing just appeared out of the fire...' " We're both cracking up now, even though I know it was far from hilarious at the time. "That goat had all the sins of the people on his head? He must have been like ..." and he gets up on his knees in his bed and does a faceplant into his pillow. I can't contain myself. Our laughter fills the house.
After we pray and I kiss him, I walk down the stairs in shock. Sometimes I wonder if this goofy boy hears anything I'm saying through his constant bouncing and running and clowning. And then he'll shock me with a depth of understanding beyond my own. It's crazy-true and I shake my head. He really gets the weight of sin. Do I?
And I recall again with heavy gratitude another Scapegoat. The One who carried cumbersome sin of generations, of all. My sin, weighted on His head as He trudged, cross bearing down on His shoulders. Sent out of the city to the wilderness trash-heap. This Pearl of greatest worth trampled by sin-swine, Who followed orders from a heart compelled by the Father's love.
And I know this year of learning to follow will take me there too.
For God is pleased with you when you do what you know is right and patiently endure unfair treatment. Of course, you get no credit for being patient if you are beaten for doing wrong. But if you suffer for doing good and endure it patiently, God is pleased with you. For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example, and you must follow in his steps. - 1 Peter 2:19-21 (NLT) [emphasis added]
Isn't that what we all want? For God to be pleased with us? And I read this morning how and why that happens. He accepts us because His Son paid for us, and He is looking at Jesus covering me when He sees me. And He is pleased. I'm accepted and loved by Him, even if by no one else. And it's enough. By far.
"When identity is not drawn from a performance – but drawn toward a Person, the person of Jesus – this is the place where a life makes music. If your performance is fueled by a need for acceptance, that is what burns your life out." -Ann Voskamp
Lord, teach me what it is to truly follow You. I long to release un-surrendered sin, un-confessed fear, un-known reservations. I desire reckless abandon to Your voice, and I want to chase after You, step in Your footprints, walk in Your ways. I need Your help and guidance, but today I vow to cooperate with whatever Your Spirit wants to do in me; I vow to follow You. You are my Example.