I got suckered into playing “monkey in the middle” with the granddaughters and one of their friends. Turns out that Papaw is almost always the monkey in the middle. I think it is part of the job description that falls under “other duties as assigned.” During one of our breaks I asked the girls how school was going, if they liked their teacher, etc. I was not just trying to stall and keep from being that monkey in the middle, I really wanted to know how things were going. Each gave a similar report but their friend added an extra detail and said that she had a substitute today. Avery who is 6 and in the first grade made sure I understood what that meant, “Papaw she means she didn’t have her regular teacher today. A substitute takes your teacher’s place and comes in and teaches the class. Like if the teacher is sick or if their kids are sick and they can’t come to school, then you have a substitute that day.” So we talked about substitutes for a while, ones they have had this year and last year. The girls agreed that sometimes it is good to have a substitute because you get to do special things. This gave me an opportunity to remind my granddaughters why Christ is often referred to as our substitute. He took our place on the cross and paid the penalty for our sins so that we can be forgiven by God. Jesus is a great substitute to have! Receiving Him as our substitute allows us to do all kinds of special things; we get to be reconciled to God the Father, we get to walk in newness of life, and we get to be in the presence of our Lord for eternity! Oh the list goes on and on. He is truly a wonderful substitute to have. I hope you know Him as your substitute because as Isaiah says:
Isa 53:5 He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed.