Father . . .

1235171_10153195431325370_1137748226_nYesterday I started thinking about my dad. It happens less frequently now but I still get the urge to call him on the phone like I used to when he was alive. As I drove around town in my car on a chilly, dark and damp December night I wondered what our conversations would have been like the last two years.

 I wondered if he would have disowned me, walked away, refused to take my calls, banned me from family gatherings or reneged on my inheritance. When he was alive our relationship was sometimes tested by what I thought was conditional love but upon reflection over the last few years I don’t doubt his love. It was more conditional approval. There were times when my views of life didn’t match his and the disapproval was certainly felt.

 Last night I longed to talk to him . . . and of course it would be unfair for me to put words in his mouth but I imagined him as a reflection of my Heavenly Father and this is what I felt and thought.

 I felt his sorrow over my failures1184808_10153195489865370_1565634524_n

I felt his broken heart.

I felt his frustration that it was something he couldn’t fix . . .

 But then I was hopeful . . .

 I was hopeful that his fatherly instincts would have kicked in over the last two years.

I was hopeful that his love would have been unconditional.

I was hopeful that we would be at a place where we could talk about anything.

I felt that he would reach out with compassion

I felt that he would be redemptive

I felt that he would push me to be responsible with every moment going forward

I felt that he would care.

I felt that he would recognize the brokenness that led me to where I am today but that he would rejoice in the mercy and grace to God with me.

 Last night we would have talked about the weather and his health and his dog.

Last night we would have talked about my job and how thankful I am for it.

We would have talked about ministry and what I can or should do with the years I have left.

We would have talked about getting together over the holidays.

 Most of all I felt that he would want me to call . . .

He would want to talk to me.

He would love me . . .

 This morning I talked to my Heavenly Father about most of those things.

 Thankful for His blessings in my life.

Thankful for the grace of God.

Thankful for my family . . . all of them.

Thankful for love and for being loved everyday all day long. 

Thankful to be His child.

Be loved today by our Heavenly Father because He loves you with a perfect love.

 “See how very much our Father loves us, for He calls us his children, and that is what we are.” 1 John 3:1a NLT

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9 thoughts on “Father . . .

  1. Part way through reading his I switched from thinking about your father to thinking about your/our heavenly Father. Glad for HIS grace and mercy and love. Press on….

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  2. I no longer meet the standard my parents set for me years ago. I also, feel that disapproval. It hurts. But I was guilty of dishing out the same disapproval to others who didn’t measure up. I have been forgiven of forming and casting spiritual judgement on a person depending on their outward appearance. It is religious discrimination. Thanks be to Jesus for forgiveness, grace and mercy. I still don’t measure up in the eyes of others; however, I want to live by example that God’s love is unconditional and we don’t have to win it – we already have it! Nothing we do or don’t do will make Him love us any more or any less. Your post hit home. Once again, thank you.

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  3. This is a wonderful piece. My Mother and I had a strained relationship due to mental problems she had from some early life experience of which I never found out specifically. Unquestionably their are parents along the way who are so damaged that their heart becomes hard. Any parent other than that I believe love their children, but put specifics on the love relationship. Be it that they want perfection or feel we can never measure up to a standard they formulare in their mind, I don’t know. Some no matter how much love they feel have some unknown need keep their child guessing if the are receiving the approval the child so wants and needs. Many unanswered questions that we as children can only ponder, but sooner or later must let go. I spent 48 years seeking approval that never came, no matter what I did or accomplished. We must love and honor our parents, but we need to know when some things are a lost cause.

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  4. It seems to me that, no matter how sanctified your fathers life was, he was still in process until he stepped into the presence of his Heavenly Father. Since then you need not wonder about his unconditional love and acceptance for you, for now he sees clearly and understands fully the issues of your heart.

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  5. Wes thanks for your writings and I love your insights. In the last few weeks I experienced a time of Gods love so real that I thought he was sitting next to me with His arm all around me. I so needed that. Stay close my friend, stay close! Form a man who loves you. Mark Smith

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