A few weeks ago, I was having a particularly difficult day. I had my music on shuffle and a song started playing that took me back to my teenage years in Colombia. It was a song my Bible teacher - and adopted dad - Mr. V, loved. Whenever I hear it, I think of him.
As the song played, I thought, "What would Mr. V say to me right now?"
Tears came to my eyes, even as words of encouragement came to my mind. I told myself, "I think he would say, 'Joanna, God is faithful. Remember all He's done for you, how He's carried you through. He'll bring you through this too.'"
Even though it's been more than 25 years since I've seen Mr. V (he was martyred in Colombia), I still knew what he would say to me. I still remember his father-heart. He had so much love that he shared with people, especially the missionary kids he served so well. Mr. V was an amazing expression of God's Father-heart.
Some people I know are blessed with a wonderful dad! Others, like me, grew up without a father. And some have experienced the heartache of a really bad earthly father. Regardless, we all want an incredible father to fill that place in our lives. There's something about the role of a father....
The good news is that Almighty God, the Holy One, the Sovereign LORD - has chosen to be our heavenly Father! Does that amaze you like it does me?
God didn't have to adopt us as His children. He could have just provided salvation and a relationship with Him as our Lord, Master, and Savior. But I think the eternal reality is that God IS the original Father. And so consistent with who He is, He created humans to live in family relationships, including a father role. While human fathers are imperfect, our heavenly Father is greater than any dad we can imagine!
Jesus said that He came to reveal the Father. Think about how much love, compassion, and commitment that shows!
God wants us to know Him as our Father - in that personal, real, safe, affirming, secure, fun, completely loved way that goes beyond being His servant, to being His beloved child!
It astounds me.
Knowing that I have someone who wants me to know Him - even more than I want to know Him.
Knowing that He wants me to know how loved I am - even more than I want to be loved.
Knowing that He is even more committed to me - than I long for Him to be.
How is your relationship with your heavenly Father? Does He feel distant? Is it hard to see Him as loving you unconditionally? Does He make you laugh? Can you climb up in His lap (metaphorically speaking) and just be held by Him?
I know for me, getting to know God more and more as my Father - my Abba, daddy - has been one of the greatest blessings I've experienced in my life. I ask Jesus often to continue to reveal the Father to me. I want to go deeper in knowing my Father's heart and enjoying this indescribable relationship with the great "I AM" - who has chosen to be my Abba.
If it helps you, my friend and I have created a new video series called "From the Father's Heart" with brief but powerful messages about your heavenly Father and His heart for you. Below is the first video in our series. If you haven't seen it yet on our Facebook page or YouTube channel, I hope it'll bless and encourage you.
Let's keep drawing near to our Father - He's calling us, "Come near. Know me. Rest. Receive."
From the Father's Heart