The Christian’s journey from birth to maturity is a progression from servant-hood through friendship to son-ship. According to Galatians, a child is no different from a servant even though he is the heir of all things. That means that what we are by birth-right is not necessarily what we are by experience. Therefore if a believer must experience his inheritance in Christ, he must make the transition from a servant to becoming a friend and then ultimately a son. A believer does this by converting his birth-right into life experiences in Christ Jesus.
Unfortunately for many Christians, especially those of the ‘new creation’ and ‘positive confession’ movement, they presume that they are already sons. They presume maturity without process because they mistake our birth-right for our experience, but this is not entirely true. One is inherent while the other is relative. Our birth-right is Christ’s provisions of grace for us, but our experience is based on how much of these provisions we draw on by faith.
An heir that lives like a servant is just like a man with hundreds of billions in his account but refuses to make withdrawals from it, his living standard will not mirror his account balance. You can be the heir of the universe and still live like a pauper. You can decide to make minor adjustments to live like a millionaire, but you will still be living below the standards and possibilities destined for you by virtue of your bank account. That’s the difference between the provisions of grace and our experience by faith. As our faith experiences increases, our journey progresses from that of a servant to that of a son. In other words, we can tell whether we are servants, friends or sons based on the particular experience we have on this spiritual journey.
There are still those who think, based on the superfluous nature of their experiences, that they have become sons. Sadly, this is not true either. It is not the nature of an experience but the experience itself that serves as an indicator of where we are. To illustrate, you don’t progress from an employee to an entrepreneur simply because you had a exponential raise in your salary. Neither do people cease to be C.E.Os simply because they became bankrupt. So don’t let the spectacular nature of your Christian experience (or lack of it) delude you into presumption. Instead, look at the sign posts in your prophetic pilgrimage and let them be an indicator for where you are.
For those still in doubt about where they are on this journey, here is a poem God inspired me to write about servants, friends and sons. Meditate on it, it will help you pin point where you are on this journey of faith.
Of Servants, Friends and Sons
Servants are valuable, they come at a price,
Friends are rare gems, they are hard to come by,
Sons on the other hand, are priceless.
A man becomes a servant when he sacrifices his free will,
A servant becomes a friend when he begins to love,
A friend becomes a son when he accepts adoption.
Servants go the whole distance,
Friends go the extra mile,
Sons don’t keep scores, they walk in the Father’s footsteps.
Servants worship because it’s in their job description,
Friends do because they love to,
For sons, worship is second-nature to them.
A servant is committed to work of service,
A friend is committed to relationship,
And a son is committed to legacy.
A servant is driven by duty,
A friend by loyalty,
But a son by family name, heritage and posterity.
Servants are given responsibility,
Friends are given access,
Sons are given authority.
Servants are stationed in the Father’s field,
Friends in the Father’s house,
but sons at the right hand of the Father.
Servants know Him as the way,
Friends know Him as the truth,
Sons know Him as their life.
Servants are entrusted with instruction,
Friends with secrets,
But sons are entrusted with the whole estate.
Are you a servant of God, are you a friend of God, or are you a son? A true son does not leave the virtues and culture learnt while being a servant or a friend, he takes them along with him into son-ship. To be a son in whom the Father is well pleased we must do the same. For in the end, we are all called to wear these three hats, so that as believers, we continue in the service of our king, befriending our God, and crying out Abba Father.
Dedicated to my father, Pastor Tunde Bakare.