Day 15 // Orphan or Daughter?

Read: John 14:1-31, John 16:5-16


My cousin adopted a little girl from Russia. A friend of hers adopted two children from Russia as well. All three children had been without parents, but their experiences in their different orphanages led to different beliefs. My cousins little girl had been an orphanage with plenty of food. When she got to the states, food was not a big deal to her. The other two children had been in an orphanage that did not have enough food. When those children got to the states, they hoarded food and ate like they were in a race. They were afraid of being without food, and it showed in their actions.

As Christians, we live like hungry orphans when we believe that we are responsible to provide for ourselves. We believe we have to make it happen, and we believe we have to hang onto anything we don’t want to lose with a tight grip.

What are you grasping onto for dear life? Is it your home, your job, your finances, your children, your marriage, or a relationship? Are you feeling the weight of the world? Do you feel responsible for the outcomes of situations in your life?

As believers, we are invited into a life of so much more. We are invited into a life of being dearly loved children who are provided for. But every day presents a choice – am I going to live like a dearly loved daughter or an orphan?

The disciples in John 14 are troubled. This is the night of Jesus’ arrest, and He is trying to prepare them for what is to come. He tells them that He is going away, but that He will prepare a place for each one of them. Jesus tells them in John 14:4, “You know the way to the place where I am going.”

Thomas is concerned that they do not know the way and Jesus famously responds, 

I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. If you really knew Me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know Him and have seen Him.
— John 14:6-7

Jesus goes on to tell them that they will do even greater things than they have seen Jesus do. He tells them the secret of this new ability.

If you love me, you will obey what I command. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.
— John 14:15-18

Jesus will not leave the disciples as orphans. Yes, He will be gone in a physical body, but even better, He will be with them continually through the Holy Spirit.

In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit came on people for specific purposes, but it was almost always temporary. Here Jesus announces He must leave so that the Holy Spirit will be sent permanently to all who believe in Him.

In John 14:26, the Holy Spirit is called our Counselor. This Counselor will teach them and remind them of all Jesus has said. The word Counselor is also translated Helper. Chuck Swindoll says the word “carries the idea of a trainer running alongside someone in a race to provide counsel, correction, hope, comfort, and positive perspective.”

You are not alone. You are a dearly loved child of God. 

Faith in Jesus Christ changes our status forever from orphan to daughter. You and I have been given the Helper, the Holy Spirit. God’s promised presence with us is why Jesus can say,

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid
— John 14:27

What are you grasping like a hungry orphan? Are you grasping an unhealthy relationship? Are you grasping for the approval of your boss? Are you grasping your way instead of God’s way? Are you grasping your children? Are you grasping your marriage?

Does God have a plan to provide for all of us in the future? If we are a dearly loved daughter, then the answer is, “Yes and Amen!”

I am trying to open my hand. Let’s open our hands together because God has something better for His daughters.


NEXT STEPS:

In your Going Deeper Participant Guide, let’s look at Day 15 beginning on page 33. Complete Look at the Details and Personal Application sections. Then come back here and share your answer to the following discussion question in the comment section below. (You can find the comment section at the bottom of this message. Just scroll down and you’ll see the words “Post a Comment.” Click there and share your responses.) Or, join the conversation on our Facebook Community Group.

"What descriptive ideas or promises about the Holy Spirit did you find in John 14 and John 16:5-16? What role do you feel like the Holy Spirit plays in your life? What questions do you have about the Holy Spirit?"

I will be posting my responses in the comment section and on Facebook too, so I hope to see you there!

I'm glad we're going on this journey together! #undividedwomen