God the father
A couple of weeks ago, I had a really strange dream. Grace and I were taking a small vacation in San Antonio to enjoy one last trip by ourselves before we welcome our son into the world. In this dream, Grace and I got onto a plane to fly back to Austin, which didn’t make sense in the first place because who in their right mind would take a plane trip that could be covered in an hour by driving? The dream took a really horrific turn as the plane we were flying in crashed and killed our unborn son while Grace and I survived, miraculously. I remember waking up and feeling so completely despondent and heartbroken as I struggled to piece together reality and shake myself from the nightmare. In that moment, I felt a profound sense of loss that I had never felt before. But this wasn’t even real. It was all just a dream.
What’s interesting to me is how much that small dream affected my feelings towards my son. His existence was so important to me that I broke down at the prospect of him not being in my life. The funny thing is, I’ve never met my child. He hasn’t been introduced to the world yet. I’ve never had a conversation with him, he doesn’t have a personality yet and I don’t even know what he looks like. In fact, I don’t know anything about this kid except that he’s mine and is currently sitting in Grace’s belly next to me. Why did I care so much about somebody that I’ve never known anything about?
The simple answer is that he is MY son. Whether he comes directly from my wife or is adopted from an agency or different country is irrelevant. We feel intense emotions of love and protection over our sons and daughters that God has placed in our lives. We don’t need to know anything else about them other than the fact that we claimed them as our own to feel those paternal instincts.
Now, imagine God’s perspective on Fatherhood. He is the father of all creation, over all the people that live on this earth. God knows each and every one of us more than we could ever come to know our own children. David says in Psalm 139:13 that God created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. He draws us in to have a relationship with him, so that we can have life in His name because of His love for us. My imperfect love as in imperfect father to my son will be nothing like God’s love for us as His children.
As Christians, this perspective of God as our loving Father changes the way we perceive life. Romans 8:15 declares “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, Abba, Father”. We don’t need to fear about being in the hands of a disruptive or unfair father. We don’t have to worry about falling into the slavery of sin. Instead, we have a relationship with the Father through Jesus who genuinely loves and cares about us, even throughout the difficult circumstances of our lives.
This week, let’s remember the love that God has for us as His children. Pray that our eyes would be opened to His perspective of the world. Our hope is in our relationship with our Father in heaven, and we can know that His love is bigger than anything we could possibly conceive on this earth.