The problem with forced silence is, my musing brain doesn’t stop. It just keeps going and going and going…. SO, when I come out of hiding, my mind is full of things that have been “churning” in the background. What does one do with all THAT?!
One of the things that I have been musing about is a daddy’s love.
Fathers who aren’t attentive to the needs of their families have certainly come into the spotlight over the last years. Science has shown the need for both young girls and boys to know that their father loves them, is proud of them and delights in them. The stats that result from fathers that are either not present or not communicating when they are present are staggering. (Not to mention down right discouraging.)
So, my question for today is, “If it’s important for our children to know that their human father loves them, in order for them to be strong, healthy, successful people, how much more so for us to know of our heavenly Father’s love?
We know – and have probably quoted – the stats concerning little girls and their desire to remain pure – or not – being a reflection of the amount of love and care that they have felt from their dads. Why wouldn’t we think that the Bride of Christ would be any less willing to allow her purity to be besmirched, by false teaching or deceitful men, if she were absolutely certain of her Daddy’s love for her?
I have heard many people say “You can’t teach the love of God over obedience to God.” I hear – and appreciate – that concern. But knowing flesh as I do, having had some for nearly…well for quite a while, anyway – I know that flesh loves the law. Flesh loves the law for many reasons, but one is so that it can lord itself over others when it accomplishes it. An understanding of Father’s amazing love for us removes the desire to lord it over anyone. Knowing that He dearly loves us frees us from the need to look better than anyone else in our Father’s eyes.
What, you may be wondering, about John 14: 15, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments”? I confess that for a long time that verse would go fist to fist in my head with Romans 2:4 “Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?” THEN I read John 14 in Hebrew – it says, “If you love Me, the commandments the My keep.” That sounds an awful like “If you love Me, then you – by My power, because of My love– will keep My commandments.” Rather than this being a matter of our performance, is it not a matter of the work that He does in us, because of His grace?! (ESPECIALLY when we pair it with John 15, when Jesus tells us, “Apart from Me, you can do nothing.”)
I am becoming more and more convinced that a weak and ineffectual understanding of the love that Father has for us, results in a weak and ineffective faith that causes us to have a weak and ineffectual testimony, presenting a weak and ineffectual Gospel to the world! When we know how our Father sees us (and John 17:23 is a GREAT place to start) then we will grow like any and all other children who have loving daddies. Confident, bold and ready to be all that we have been called to be – not to mention, honor and please our Father!