“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Just over 240 years ago the Founding Fathers of these United States of America rebuked the tyrannical rule of the King of Great Britain with the signing of the Declaration of Independence. With their signatures, they documented “firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence” and mutually pledged “to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.” Life-giving indeed to the generations that followed!
We have had our share of ups and downs as a nation trying to live into those powerful words, the convictions of our Founding Fathers. Today, “life” in America is more about trying to earn a living that will give you “liberty” to do what you want on a holiday weekend or vacation. The “pursuit of happiness” has taken on meanings that could not be fathomed even a generation ago. Many Americans are caught in the cycle of doing life, providing as best they can and surviving another day. That is not living into the life, liberty and pursuit of happiness the Founders envisioned.
So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit.” – 1Corinthians 15:45. Our Father gave Adam life with liberty to choose obedience and the ability to pursue happiness in a garden of plenty. The first Adam chose to disobey, tried to be his own god and failed to love the woman he was given. It could be said he was a life-taking spirit. The second Adam chose to obey, humbly served His Father and loved the woman, the Church, He was given. Life-giving indeed to those following in the Way!
The challenge before men today is to rebuke the relationship with the first man Adam that is focused on self. Life is being taken out of marriages, family, the Church and even our nation by a self-centered, be-our-own-god mentality. The call from Paul to the Corinthians is for us to recognize the relationship between the earthly man and the Heavenly Man, learn from the former and embrace the latter, and reflect the life-giving spirit.
Prayer guide: Lord, I praise You for the last Adam, Jesus the Christ. I strive to be more than a living being that works to provide while trying to survive another day. Guide me in looking beyond the earthly man I am to the Heavenly Man You call me to emulate. Equip me as a man, husband and father to be a life-giving spirit in marriage, family and the other circles of influence where You have me. Amen.
A faithful father reflects the life-giving spirit of Jesus the Christ.