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You Please Me Well
Photo: Bob Knight
The fullness of time had come and the stage was set for Daniel’s prophecy to be fulfilled. Messiah, the anointed One, arrived on the scene (Daniel 9:25). John the Baptist saw the Lamb of God in the distance and knew immediately that He was the Promise of God who would save His people from their sins. Their eyes met, and a sense of awe came over John as he heard the melodious voice of Jesus announce that He wanted John to baptize Him, fulfilling all righteousness. Though overwhelmed at first, John finally consented to the Master’s request. He baptized Jesus in the Jordan River. What happened next will give us context for this brief expose. "And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: and lo a voice from heaven, saying, 'This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased' "(Matthew 3:16, 17).

As I read the verse above it, it occurred to me that one of the main reasons our children are crushed beneath the heavy burden of low self-esteem, negative peer pressure, and some psychological problems is that they do not often hear words from their parents such as those spoken of Christ by the Father—“You are dearly loved, and You please Me.” Instead, many children experience the harsh disapproval of parents who say things such as “You will never amount to anything! You are lazy and good for nothing! You’re always messing up!” I know adults of different age groups who have not yet recovered from this unfortunate reality. I know one young lady, in particular, who is on the verge of divorce, partly because she was not nurtured into a complete woman, and didn’t know the affirming love of her father.

Jesus Made Him Happy

We can learn a lesson from the banks of the Jordan River. Our heavenly Father wanted the entire earth to know that Jesus made Him happy. The Father wanted all who would ever hear of Christ to know that His ministry had the stamp of heavenly approval. In times of deep distress, such as the wilderness experience that followed Jesus’ baptism, the Father wanted His dear Son to remember that He occupied a unique position on earth and would make a valuable contribution to the lives of many people.

Could it be that if more parents demonstrated their love for their children through words of approbation, these dear ones would remember their value in their wilderness experiences of suicidal thoughts, the possibility of drug addiction, or the abuse of their sexuality through promiscuity? Could it be that these words, spoken from sincere lips, could be the balm that leads them to the feet of Jesus where they can be delivered from all that is evil forever? I think the time has come when all parents everywhere should make it commonplace to say to their children, “You please me well.” Perhaps these four words, though individually insignificant, could be united to lead otherwise wayward children to believe that God, too, is pleased by their existence, and that He loves them very much. How do we know that God is pleased that we are around? Jesus gave His life so that we can live with God forever.

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By L. David Harris. Reprinted with persmission from Message Magazine, January/February 2007. Copyright © 2007 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW KING JAMES VERSION © 1982.

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