What kind of Dad did you have growing up? How would you describe him? Was he stern but loving? Did he tell you he loved you or did he expect you to just know it? Was he interested in you? Did he just put up with you? Does the word Dad dredge up horrible memories or fond ones? How would you describe your relationship with your father?
I knew my dad loved me. He had a way of making each one of us, his three daughters, feel special and he was creative in his love for us. I knew that he understood me, that he had studied me like a good book and was familiar with who I was deep down inside. Sometimes, I liked that and other times I hated it!
I was blessed with a very special gift in my Dad. For many people and maybe you’re one of them, this was not the case. Maybe your dad didn’t love you. Maybe he was cruel and hurtful, causing lasting scars that you continue to carry.
What I’ve observed is that we all have a tendency to allow our earthly father “experience” to cloud our perception of our Heavenly Father. Even if we’ve had a good experience our understanding of God can be skewed.
Even the very best father here on earth is only a faint image of our True Heavenly Father.
I’ve discovered that the place I need to go to get a clear picture is God’s Word. Only there will I discover who my Heavenly Father truly is and be able to grasp an accurate image of Him based on the truth of Scripture rather than from my own warped and distorted viewpoint.
Look at how God is described in Zephaniah 3:17, “For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.”
What do we learn about God from this passage of Scripture?
He is living among us! He is not a distant God who created the world and left it to it’s own demise. No! He makes His dwelling with you. Where you go, He goes. Your cares are HIs cares, your joy, His joy. He makes Himself available to all those who seek after Him.
He is a mighty savior. He rescued you from certain eternal destruction by sending His only Son to take your place and to die a brutal death so that you might live with Him for all eternity. What more could He do to prove His love for you? He is your HERO, your GREAT REDEEMER, your MIGHTY SAVIOR!
He delights in us with gladness. He’s proud of you. Your pictures are on his refrigerator and in his wallet and when the angels ask about you he pulls them out and brags about you. His heart swells with love and His eyes light up when He meets with you. He loves being with you.
With His love, he calms our fears. When fear threatens to overtake you, when you are overwhelmed by your circumstances, He points to the cross and whispers, “Remember! Remember, my love for you! I love you with an everlasting love; a love that has no conditions and no end.”
He rejoices over us with joyful songs. God is singing over you from a heart that is overflowing with love. It is His pure expression of joy as He celebrates you, his treasured child.
Have you ever thought about God like this? Do you struggle with God as your Heavenly Father? I encourage you to pick up your Bible and get to know your God. He won’t disappoint!
3 thoughts on “Knowing Your Heavenly Father”
Such wonderful, wonderful encouragement! Praise God!
Excellent post, Kristi. So comforting and encouraging! Thanks!
elaine @ peace for the journey
I've often told the story about one of Billy Graham's earliest remembrances. He was around 2 years old and his father was returning from a lengthy trip. When Billy ran outside to greet his father, his dad was down on one knee with his arms stretched out wide! Talk about influencing a young mind with the truth/things of God!!!
Even in such love, our perceptions are flawed about God. We do him a great disservice when we equate him to our earthly fathers. He's so much bigger… so much more.
Great teaching and time post. I'm so grateful to know my God and that he is living with me everyday. Where would we be without him?