Abba’s Heart by Neal Lozano

Abba's Heart: Finding Our Way Back to the Father's Delight by 
Neal and Matthew Lozano, Chosen Publishing, Minnesota, 2015

The following are quotes I have collected from reading this book.

Purpose

“The purpose of this book is to draw you into the heart of the Father” (18).

Truths

1: Jesus revealed the Father

Jesus’ sole agenda is to bring us to the Father (26). Jesus is the very heart of the Father revealed (31). Everything that Jesus did revealed the heart of a Father who loves us dearly and gave everything for us (69). When Jesus teaches us to address God as Father, He is inviting us to a relationship with the Father on the basis of intimacy, trust, confidence, and openness to ask (80).

Jesus’ communion with the Father is the “true center of his personality; without it, we cannot understand him at all, and it is from this center that he makes himself present to us still today” ~ Pope Benedict XVI, Jesus of Nazareth

2: We are prodigal sons who have been called from slavery to sonship

The famed Prodigal is a homesick child who knows he has a father and a place called home. The Prodigal came face to face with the reality of his life. He understood that he was the son of a father. But he never really understood the man he had desparately wanted to escape.

The tragedy of slavery is ultimately the separation of the Father from His children. The Father offered up His son so that we might become children of God (Eph 1:3-5, John 1:12).

We all have a choice. We can identify with sin or identify with the Son. You can follow the distortion that led you astray or the faithful Son who leads you in truth (118).

You have both a fallen nature and the Spirit of God within you. You must choose one to lead you, for they are leading in different directions.

3: Freedom in the Son

Being set free is not the same thing as living in freedom. Christ set us free for a life of freedom. Jesus is not only the Son who initially sets you free from slavery, He is also the Way to lifelong freedom (59). 

Freedom is not the ability to make choices without fear of reprisal, freedom is the actualization of the potential given to us by nature. The only true choices we make are consistent with who and what we are (65).

Jesus’ invitation to know the Father is an invitation to the ultimate freedom of knowing life at its source – by this, we come to know ourselves as His sons and daughters. It awakens us to our purpose and the fact that we belong to someone (65).

True freedom means having your mind transformed by the truth about who you are and whose you are, so you can choose the good in light of this reality (65). This freedom will be an ongoing discovery (66).

4: We long for Home and desperately need Abba

Our greatest need is to hear our heavenly Father respond to us and tell us that He loves us… something deep in our spiritual DNA cries out for our Father (21).

“All of us possess a longing for home – a place where we know we belong, where we can freely be ourselves, where we are known most intimately and loved and accepted for who we are” (100).

You have a home in the centre of the Father’s heart (109).

5: Life in the Father’s house

This is not a matter of rewriting your history so much as purifying your memory (127). He can heal our memories and our broken patterns of thinking. He rescues orphans and makes them sons.

We must learn to sit in His presence, listen to His word, and reflect on His goodness.

6: We have been given royal authority to represent our Father

How about you? Have you discovered what it means to walk as a child of the Father in this world? Do you know what it means to carry His authority? (151)

You have authority over your enemies in the name of Jesus. Taking your stand means exposing these lies, renouncing them and standing in the authority God gave you in the Son.

Exercises

Stop and think for a moment about an event in the life of Jesus. Think about what He said or did. As you meditate on this event, ask the Holy Spirit to enable you to see the Father. Can you feel the heartbeat of the Father as it pulses through the life of Jesus? (80)

Stop for a moment and think of your favourite Scriptures. Take them to prayer. Listen to those words, but this time, hear them coming from the loving heart of your Father. Let Him speak those words to you (82).

Ask the Holy Spirit to remind you of times in your life when the Father reached out to you. The Holy Spirit can give you insights and a pathway to know your Father’s heart through life experiences (83).

God is a Father who cares about the smallest details… Ask for little reminders of the Father’s favour and His interest in the smallest details. Ask for His help.  

Maintain an active commitment to renewing your mind.

Exercise your authority in Jesus’ name by renouncing the reign of darkness in your life.

Pray in the Trinity – ask each Person to reveal the other Persons. Ask Jesus to show you the Father, and then talk to Jesus about His Father. Ask the Holy Spirit to release the cry of your heart for the Father.

Let the Father look at you – Allow the Father to look at you, remembering that you are in the Son. Allow yourself to be filled with an awareness of His delight for you as His favourite child.

Be honest with the Father –  He can use our honesty to bring us to a deeper level of surrender. Admit that the Father’s will is the very best and that He has more in mind for us than we could ever ask or imagine.

Prayers

“I love you Dad. Do you love me?” Do we dare to pray this prayer? (21)

Ask God to reveal Himself to you as your Father… It is the work of the Son and the Spirit to answer your prayer (18).

“Father, what happened today that brought You pleasure? What did I do that delighted your heart?” (213)

 

 

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