Wednesday, May 2, 2012

being wanted by our father

One of the concepts that Francis Chan’s book Crazy Love brought my way was this idea that our Heavenly Father wants us.  His love for us is not centered on our salvation alone.  He wants to be part of our entire lives.

Many of the people that I have counseled over the years I have been in ministry have had a real desire to please their parents and many pointed directly to wanting to please their fathers.  The same is true for God.  Many Christians are seeking to please God or maybe to appease him in some way, shape or form.

Yet God desires for us to understand through His unconditional love for us that our God simply wants us.  This concept may be foreign to you as Chan said it was to him. 

The impact of our human relationships on our relationship with God is something we cannot miss.  Your father may not have been good to you or not have been present, but he was your father.  Or your story may be very different with a father who cared and did a pretty good job of loving you.  We had to have a father to get in to this world whether ours was there or not, good or not.

Francis Chan talked about not really understanding how much God loves and wants His kids until he had kids of His own.  He wrote:

My own love and desire for my kids’ love is so strong that it opened my eyes to how much God desires and loves us.  May daughter’s expression of love for me and her desire to be with me is the most amazing thing.  Nothing compares to being truly, exuberantly wanted by your children.

…I came to understand that my desire for my children is only a faint echo of God’s great love for me and for every person He made.  I am just an earthly, sinful father, and I love my kids so much it hurts.  How could I not trust a heavenly, perfect Father who loves me infinitely more than I will ever love my kids?  (quoted from Francis Chan, Crazy Love)

Powerful truth.  This hit me again three times this afternoon.  I was with each of my kids at different times after school today.  Our middle daughter, affectionately known as Baby Ruth, and I went on a short shopping expedition to one of our local stores.  I really enjoyed connecting with her.  A bit later I picked up our oldest daughter, Rebecca, and after we dropped her friend off at her house I pulled a little bag out from under my seat because Ruth and I picked up a surprise for Rebecca.  I was so grateful for how pleased she was with a small thing like a candy bar.  She was smiling and loving it.  Later this evening our son (I often call him Ryan-o and I don’t know why) begged me to go outside to play baseball.  It had rained a lot this afternoon, and I was not too excited about going outside.  He was persistent.  We played.  Then it was time for basketball, and we played HORSE for the first time.  He had a ball and was so excited.

Each of those made this daddy so proud of my kids.  I love them.  Hear me out: I want my kids to know that I love them and that I am proud of them.  My dad taught me much of this as well, and I have fond memories of our time together when I was young (this week is my dad’s birthday… and I miss him and my mom).

It is a high calling to love our kids and to point them to Jesus.  May we dads be echos and examples of the love of God.  Think about it.  This is incredible.  So, there is more love to come, and I am so thankful for my dad’s love and care for me and even more thankful for the truth of my Heavenly Father’s love and desire for me!

So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him.

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happy birthday, Julie

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