Hand in Hand
The following is an excerpt from the book, Timeless Truths of the Christian Life, which my mother compiled of Sunday School lessons, which were taught by her mother, Margaret Tadlock Kann, to her adult Sunday School Class in Fort Worth, TX between 1962 and 1965. I especially love this one where my grandmother describes her relationship with my great-grandfather, "Papa Tadlock", as it pointed her to a relationship with Jesus Christ. Enjoy! . . .
(available at bystillwater.org and amazon.com)
FAITH IS A WAY - a way of thinking, acting, feeling, and speaking. It is that quality of expectancy which makes what is promised MORE REAL than what is seen. Such assurance springs from confidence in the One who promised.
"Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for" (Hebrews 11:1).
In reading through Hebrews 11, one realizes that the heroes of faith all had their moments of tragedy. They responded by traveling primarily in a Godward direction because they were convinced that God is, and that His promise is more sure than all the disappointments or discouragements, as well as all the successes and accomplishments of life (Hebrews 11:6).
Life is a constant series of faith ventures for us, just as it was for the patriarchs of old; for as a child of God, we too are heirs of God's promises. Actually, faith's venture Godward is the loftiest reach of which man is capable. It is the gold-leafing of all other thoughts and activities, convictions and loyalties. The astonishingly awesome spiritual miracle is that every person may exert himself or herself Heavenward and profit thereby. This faith invested in Jesus Christ is one's first step into the timelessness of eternity and into glory beyond that which anyone can ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20)
By faith an individual decides to live hand-in-hand with God, thus to explore the unknown. This is indeed high adventure. Hand-in-hand, here is the thrill of spiritual expectancy. Far from suggesting feather-bed escapism, a close walk with God demands that one stretch ever toward Christ-likeness.
(Marjorie's mother, my grand-mother... Margaret Tadlock Kann)
The hand of God is associated in my thinking, somehow, with the strong muscular hands of my earthly father. My earliest remembrance of those hands is a firm thump of knuckles on my head when, as a child, I misbehaved in church. The thump plainly said, "You must do what Papa says."
At other times, I distinctly felt the weight of his hand on my shoulder. After a day of hard work, he often lay down upon the floor and slept for a while. Often he called me to give him a hug and a kiss, and then pretended to be asleep with the weight of that hand heavy upon me so that I could not squirm away. Soon both youngster and Papa were fast asleep.
"Papa" Tadlock - Margaret's father, Marjorie's grand-father, Lynn's great-grand-father)
I saw those hands as they cleaned and polished five pairs of children's shoes early each Sunday morning in preparation for Sunday School and church. I remember a Bible in one hand and my small hand in the other as together we went to God's house.
In retrospect, I watch as the fishing gear is readied and wonder at how deftly each bit of tackle is set alright by experienced hands. Then I hear that loved voice say, "Do you want to go with Papa?" Thus I feel both the pressure and the preciousness of that weather-roughened hand upon me and I do not possess a dearer treasure.
The Christian walks hand-in-hand with God who feels His correction and responds, welcomes His invitations to rest with Him, worships in His presence, and even shares recreation time with Him.
This person may typically begin each day with a conscious reminder of the Father, see each event of the day as an opportunity to know Him better and face tomorrow expectantly, being aware that he or she is an heir of the PROMISES!