“I will be a Father to you and you will be my sons and daughters,” says the Lord Almighty
2 Cor 6:18
In the mid 70s during a Life In The Spirit seminar at St Luke’s, I had a revelation of God as my Saviour and my Lord. Since then my relationship with Him has grown and deepened and become central to my life. Sometime ago, however, He began to reveal Himself as my Father as well as my Saviour and my Lord. It was no doubt in answer to my ongoing prayer desiring an ever deeper relationship with Him.
I had a conversation recently with a ten-year-old who was telling me about some problem at school. I don’t remember the details of the problem, but I do remember his comment. He said, “I’m going to discuss this with my parents.” The inference was that he was going to share his problem with his parents because firstly, they would understand and care about his distress and secondly, he expected them to give him wise advice as to what to do. While I was listening to his words, it came to me that this is the kind of relationship our Heavenly Father desires to have with us. It says as much in Scripture: “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest” Mt 11:28. Prov 3:5 says “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.” Instructions like these ones were not taught to children in the culture in which I grew up. I was encouraged rather to ‘shoulder my own burdens’, ‘to keep my chin up’ when I was hurt and sad and to ‘stand on my own two feet and make my own decisions’. These were considered important lessons for character formation and maturity.
As I read Scripture, however, I see that the instructions I received were not the ones Jesus followed. He depended totally on His Father; “I tell you the truth, the son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing… the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does…” Jn 5:19-20. He shared His distress with His Father; “My Father if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me.” Mt 26:39. He was also completely obedient to His father. He didn’t make His own independent decisions; “My Father if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.” Mt 26:42
As I contemplate the Scriptures and the character of Jesus, I see in Him infinite maturity, wisdom, competence, leadership and love and yet He said that He depended on His Father for everything. His relationship with His Father is one of Father and Son, despite being God, Himself. God says to me too that He’ll be a Father to me, so whatever age I am or stage of life I’m in, I am still His child and His great desire is that I relate to Him as His daughter. He wants to know my hurts so He can comfort me, my problems so He can counsel me, my heart’s desires so He can direct them aright and my sickness so He can bring healing. It hurts Him to see me struggle along on my own and not turn to Him when He is so able to help. Above all He wants my heart and my love as a daughter for a father.
This ever-deepening Father daughter relationship brings much joy and also security because He will always look after me. He will never leave nor forsake me (Heb 13:5) for as well as being my Lord and Saviour; He is my Father.