Sunday, April 3, 2011
Suffer not the children
Today, after everyone returned from the church service, my wife, children, and I decided to go out and eat together at a decently nice restuarant. We all piled into the car and drove about twenty five minutes to get to this place that we really enjoy. The food, music, atmosphere, all of it just really jives with us. As we got there we noticed the parking lot was exceptionally full. The hostess informed us it would probably be twenty, twenty five minutes before we could get in. So we decided we would wait.
We sat there in the little entry way waiting patiently as people came and went. There were several benches, and most of them unoccupied. My youngest ran back and forth sitting on different areas, playing with her baby doll. Finally she ran up to me, and jumped in my lap. She said, I love you daddy. Then curled up and just sat there while I rocked her with my knee. For a few minutes I was living a moment of what I believe Heaven is made of.
She was content just to be there in my arms. She knew that she could safely jump in my lap and didn't need permission. She didn't hestitate, or say is it ok. She simply took for granted that daddy was there and she was safe. That she could relax and even drift in her thoughts to the music in the room.
When was the last time we thought of God that way? God is our Father. Often we think of Him as the stoic, unyielding judge who will exact vengeance. How often do we remember that He is our Father, and we are safe in His arms. We are forgiven and can without any hesitance, any fear walk up to Him and sit in His lap. That he will wrap His peaceful arms around us and never question the moment. That we don't need permission to be with our Father, we just simply can be! How often do we have faith that we are completely forgiven, and that our Father is simply waiting for us, patiently and lovingly to want His affection and touch. We must be like little children, confident not because we have earned it, but simply trusting in the love of our God.
I pray that each of us will have our eyes opened, until we can see God the Father for who He truly is. The loving, forgiving and patient God. The one whose arms hold us when we cry, whose knee bounces us when we need pacified, and whose hand reaches out to pick us up when we fall. That we will learn to not simply provide lip service to the acceptance of grace, but to truly believe in our hearts that we are forgiven! That we are the children of God! To truly understand that grace and not only accept it, but to run out and share it! To shout it from the rooftops and from the sidewalks! To say, My God, my father, I know that you have forgiven me though I do not deserve it! Thank you Father for your wonderful, magnificent grace that covers all my sins! Help me to show others your true, and perfect love!