My father taught me how to weld around the age of twelve. My first lesson with an arc welder included how to safely set the power, set the ground connection between what I was going to weld and the welder, and how to protect my eyes. The latter was, I knew, critical to my health and safety. Everything else that followed was for safety, strength, and overall appearances. I learned how to wear gloves, strike the plate to get the weld started, and lay a strong weld. It was fun! There was no doubt, despite my age, that I knew I was authorized to use the welder. I had the knowledge. I would tell anyone willing to listen. I would gladly lay a weld for anyone needing two pieces of steel held together.
The sense of authority has never completely left me since those early days. After welding, Dad introduced me to a grinder (love the sparks!), a metal lathe (love the smooth finish!), and then to woodturning (a love that continues to this day). I cannot say that I ever completely mastered any discipline. I always knew and know that there is more to learn and put into practice. I do know that I was authorized. The opportunities would, in time, come, and then I could practice. When someone asked, “what business do you have doing this?” (Acts 4.7) I knew the answer.
There are many things in your life and mine that we are authorized to take the lead in. With God given creativity, we are authorized to be artists. With lessons of love, we are authorized to deliver compassion, mercy, and acceptance to everyone we meet. God continually offers us lessons in wonder, awe, and what it means to be unconditionally accepted as a part of Divinity's family. The Spirit gives us daily lessons in forgiveness and starting fresh. We are authorized members of God's family.
When I was a child, I knew I was authorized. With today's dawn, I realized I was and am authorized by God. I can act with knowledge.
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