We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19
A friend of mine has a memory of her father where she knew him as being like an angel in her life. I can relate. There’s nothing like finding out in college that your parents are not just your parents, but also they are your dear friends – I am very thankful I can say this. Unfortunately, many children and adult children can never say such a description about their parents. This is sad, indeed.
But, gratefully, for certain and for everyone, God shows us what being a real and best father is all about. He fills every loss we face as we turn to Him and learn how He does it. Like a gentleman, He never pushes His way into our lives, but invites us to respond to the guidance and strong upholding He has to offer out of His love – no strings – no conditions – just because that is who He is.
He shows us in His Word how He is our Father, and also how He is a friend to us.
No other god does this.
Other gods are cold and self-serving. This is because other gods throughout history were carved out with human tools or in human minds; nonliving, imperfect, powerless – destined to fall short.
But the Living God of the Bible shows us how He serves us instead. He does this to teach us how to love, receive love, and learn how to pass that love on to others in the same way that He shows us first.
His greatest example of this is when He sent His son Jesus to die on a cross for us and then raise Him up to live – on our behalf – so that we could live and have something that is genuinely good – our very lives that are priceless to Him.
What god in history has ever had the humility and the omnipotence at the same time to be completely in control of everything, yet could care about how many hairs are on our heads?
Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12:7
God is the Father in Heaven who reaches into the depths of who we are to know us, and help us know Him in a way that drives us to live a full life instead of driving us into despair and loss.
- A life where we can walk in confidence and share our wholeness with others.
- A life where we see all He has done and we get to a place where we do not just look at ourselves and our own needs and wants, but needs of other people matter and we are able to show them genuine love –God’s kind of love.
He is a Father who stands up to us when we are behaving destructively toward ourselves or our brothers, sisters or neighbors, and then tenderly draws us in to remind us that His discipline is to prevent us from falling into sins He knows are death traps for us.
As a loving Father, He trains us to be bold in choosing life, the best of life, on all fronts.
He makes our paths to hold lessons that many times are difficult and we cry out, “Why, Father in Heaven?” to which He sometimes replies with silence so we will seek only Him through those times. Even still, He has not left. He is there with us through every tough step we have to take.
The God in Heaven does this because He lives. Because His ability to change us through actions which – Every. Single. One. – is defined and signed by His love and nothing short of it.
He is able to redeem us from our sin choices because He proves Himself a Father and true friend. He has the humility and power at the same time to show us what meekness means – that meekness is power under control.
As a Father who is right toward His human creation, us, He is an example to us first about how to live in the best way, in strength of character, of leadership, of knowing and being known yet still loved unconditionally on a level only He can create and teach us how to do likewise.
We love because He first loved us – is the example a great father gives –an example first that children see and then respond to. This way of God is a powerful gentleness that men can lead with mightily, in kind, by following the same humility God uses to introduce Himself to us. These are the strongtowers among us we can laud. They are dads, Heaven style.
If you have or had a father like God, that’s super. Say a word of thanks to the Lord for him. If not, ask God to be the Father to you that you miss or never knew. He is able and more than willing to be everything you need. Find a quiet moment and place. Turn to God and tell Him you want Him to be the Father, the friend in your life, so that nothing else fills the place in your heart He wants to fill and in the way only He can. Then everything else is able to take a healthy, fulfilling place in your life because you are getting to see how God is there for you as a father and friend should be.
Amanda Hughes is experienced in public policy issues, particularly marriage and family, school choice, and religious freedom. Hughes approaches public policy issues through observing combined effects that both social and fiscal decisions bear on each another. For more information about Amanda Hughes, visit http://www.amandahugheswriter.com/?p=326