You’re a Good, Good Father, It’s Who You Are (Ros' Blog)
I’ve just come back from a week at CreationFest, where I was manning (or womanning!) the stand for Through the Roof. It was a great week of making connections and getting our message out there. I especially enjoyed joining Count Everyone In for their morning sessions of inclusive and accessible worship and Bible teaching, and came away knowing the Makaton signs to at least one new song. However, the single thing that made the deepest impression on me was nothing to do with any of the organised events that were taking place, but just a little scenario of which I was an unnoticed observer one day.
At one point, two people walked past my stand. One was a little girl of probably two and a half or three years old and the other was an adult, presumably her father. They strolled past among the stands, hand in hand. What struck me was that the little girl was very small, and her father was very tall. In order to hold her hand, he was having to bend sideways in a way that looked quite uncomfortable. His daughter meanwhile strolled happily along among all the legs of strangers and tables of leaflets, her hand secure in her father’s, completely oblivious to any discomfort he might be experiencing.
I thought about all the times when we’re aware of how much we owe to God – times when He has sustained us with His peace through episodes of pain, struggles with disability or physical limitations, or the shock of diagnosis or bereavement. At times like that some people feel that God seems far away, but many others are very conscious of Him holding and carrying them through the difficult times.
But I wondered about how many times God is using His power and goodness on our behalf and we are completely oblivious to what He is doing. All the little girl knew in that moment was a feeling of peace, security and enjoyment of her father’s company. I know this, because it was written all over her expressive little face as she strolled contentedly along with him. Her father, too, was enjoying her company, I could see that, but I could also see the discomfort as he walked along bending sideways to reach down to her hand so that she wouldn’t have to reach up to his.
How often, I wonder, does God reach down to us so we don’t have to stretch up to find Him? How often does He guide us safely through a maelstrom of strange circumstances or opposition that seeks our harm, and we are oblivious to this because all we are experiencing in that moment is the peace and security of walking with Him? As I watched that father with his little daughter, I knew that even such a touching example of deep fatherly love is only a pale reflection of the unimaginable depths of love in God’s Father-heart.