My umbilical cord was cut in this family. I was born into this family some two decades ago and counting. I had an identity in the family. Everyone knew me by the name of this family. We shared everything and made memories together. A biography about me would have about ninety percent of its research from this family. Yet, all this while, I was a bastard. My eyes were blinded to reality. I had been wholeheartedly accepted by this family that I unintentionally developed selective amnesia.
I had forgotten my place until He came. He made the scales fall from my eyes. He took me down memory lane. The flashbacks were excruciatingly painful. The truth was a bitter pill to swallow. Then, I wished He never made me do this. He helped me discover my family – my true identity. Now, I am eternally grateful.
While I was sitting in the church auditorium, He dropped the hint. As the servant of God speaking on the topic “The reward of submission to God”, He pricked my conscience and the psychology session then began. The experience was bare, raw and painful. Yet, He insisted I went through it all. He made me see it all. It was worth it. He uncovered the truth in Hebrews 12:8 “But if ye be without chastisement, where of all are partakers, then are ye BASTARDS and not sons’.
It dawned on me then that refusing to heed to instructions and conform to His ways made me a bastard. It is exciting to not have to answer to anybody. There is freedom. Life follows after one’s feelings and preferences. There is no one to please; no rules; no regulations; no punishments; absolute utopia! This was my idea of an ideal life. Little did I know that I was headed for a bottomless abyss.
Proverbs 29:1 puts it slightly differently. He that being reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.
So I don’t only become a bastard when I resist reprimands, but I become a vegetable. Once that neck is broken, I live with it perpetually, just like all these chronic diseases. The only difference being, those patients are able to manage the illness, cut the pain and slow down their death process; I cannot.
Just like me, most of us have hardened our necks. We have refused to listen when we are addressed. We delude ourselves into thinking we are our own ‘god’. The danger in this is we contract the ‘brittle neck’ disorder. Hence once broken cannot be mended. I don’t mean to speak to you unkindly but we must see it as it is.
Until you we the will of God, you are bastards. It is as simple as that.
As a child of the Most High, I have learned to expect chastisement. He has made me understand that chastisement is part of life. As a human being, I have the tendency to move away from the right path. That is where the reprimand comes in.
When I refuse to be chastised, then, I am a bastard. He chastises me not to disgrace me. He chastises me not out of hatred. But for my profit, that I might be a partaker of His holiness.
Just as the goldsmith hammers the part that is of interest to him continuously, God chastises his loved ones.
Once I was a bastard. The whole time I had insisted on doing things my way but Christ led me back to my first love. The bastard that I was, as hopeless as I was, the useless and ‘familyless‘ individual that I was – a human with no identity, the human with no record of living, He helped me. He gave me hope and a new identity.
He led me to my family. He led me home. He led me down that path of memory recovery safely. Today, I have a family. Today, I have a true identity. I have returned to the God of my childhood. The same simple faith I once knew and cherished. Like the prodigal son, I came back to my father. It is your turn today. Just as He accepted me, He is waiting with open arms. Come home, dear brother. Come home, dear sister. Come home.
~ By Able Delalie (Student, Central University – Ghana)