Later on I found myself singing, first in my spirit and then out of my mouth...You're a good good Father, it's who You are, it's who You are, it's who You are, and I'm loved by You, it's who I am, it's who I am, it's who I am....
I found myself thinking on that topic. (this is the moment I feel like God starts speaking to me). I find myself in my spirit having an internal conversation with His Spirit. Perhaps it's my own melancholic/sanguine personalities, but I truly believe it's God. It is not audible (although I do believe I had an audible conversation at the darkest moment of my life with God, so I don't believe it's impossible) but it starts with a sort of lesson for my life. God always seems to find those things that are deep and hidden in my heart that I've tried to deal with on my own, that frankly, we don't do a very good job at.
Do I view God as a good good Father? If not, why and why if God is good do we have to have so many people in the ministry remind us that He loves us and that we are loved by Him? Well the answer to that, lies in my tainted experience of the world... and I am going to try to be as respectful as possible in my brief description of my experience with good good fathers.
When I was 2 years of age, my mother and biological father divorced. Like many divorces it was filled with bitterness, hurt, control and anger. That relationship led to an absentee biological father through the remainder of my life. It was pure rejection and utter hurt for a little girl that never understood why her father was not there or supporting her in anyway. Now mind you, I took into consideration that bitter divorce, but to reject your own child for any reason, never sat well with me. I did question it directly and was told by my father, that I was the one who abandoned him. Sometimes, dysfunction will lay blame on anyone it can, and for a child who already feels rejection, she may eat that up and swallow that causing further regret. I was even told in a round about way that if I didn't learn to forgive as the Bible instructs, I would not enter heaven. Sometimes dysfunction, also likes to twist truth.
My mother remarried, almost immediately after that divorce and it didn't get any better as far as fathers go. My entire memory other than a few random safe ones were of fear, like Stephen King type fear. There was very traumatic abuse happening in this relationship. I found out many years later that this man may have been traumatically abused himself and may have suffered PTSD from the Vietnam war. I never knew those things, so to me, as a child between the ages of 2-9, a very influential time in a young child's life was out of control, control and anger and things I should have never had to witness or be involved in.
My mom escaped that lifestyle to remarry a man my Grandpa Rusty picked out. Grandpa Rusty will always be my mentor in life and he did a good job picking out not only a good husband for my mother, but also a stand-in father for me. This man did everything with me and for me. He took time to go to the movies, play catch, arcade, shopping and getting me involved in working on old car engines, shooting guns, teaching me things a father should. As time would evolve, this man did adopt me, and I became his daughter. Later, my Mom and Dad would have their own children, two amazing brothers for me, but whether I felt rejection and walked away as the red-headed step child, or whether it just isn't completely possible to love adopted children as much as blood, I don't know, but hurt set in.
So...is this how I viewed God? Perhaps, I took all these worldly experiences and learned that God rejects us, or beats us when we are naughty or when we don't meet His expectations, or casts us out to love his biological children more...I don't know, but my hunch says it is. My heart begins to cry when I let God touch these pains buried deep inside and then it makes it's way to my throat and then out my eyes...like flood gates.
Now what I do know is that this tainted perception is not who God is. So for those of us that perhaps do see God through the experiences of our past, what is truth?
Let's go to the beginning. When God created a home in a garden for his beloved Adam and Eve. He walked with them, talked with them, engaged with them, and even instructed them. He gave them freedom to walk and do as they pleased, with the instruction that they should never eat of the fruit of knowledge of good and evil. It wasn't that God was being mean, but in order for us to be free, we have to have a choice. Adam and Eve chose disobedience. Because of their choice and because God is sovereign and absolutely can not lie or sway from His instruction, their choice provide the consequence that God in His sovereignty could not avoid, life of separation from Him. Not that God wanted the punishment, He fully instructed that they were not to eat of the tree, but because they had the free will to make the choice to do so, God could not change the consequence. BUT...God did provide a way for his children to be returned to Him. God is able to take a bad situation and bad choices and reroute the vast existence of the universe and all that's in it, to point us back to Him. He did that through Jesus. He took His own Son and shaped all eternity through Him to reroute our bad choices back to God if we so choose.
So, my friend, the next time you take a look at your past, your hurts, your pain, your bitterness and you view of God through those lenses, remember that God loves you so much, he rerouted eternity to be connected to you, even through our bad choices and gave us the Holy Spirit, His spirit, to live in us, if we should choose. Don't allow the experiences of the world to taint the Truth of God.
Thank you Jesus.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 NIV