Father

I found a movie marathon on The Hallmark Channel today, of the movies based on Jeneatte Oke books.  The first one is Love Comes Softly, which I’ve seen before.  There is a moment in the movie that I remember it meant a lot to me the last time I saw the movie, and it renewed its meaning for me today.  The woman is questioning the man’s faith, and God’s love, in the face of tragedy.  The man explains that his daughter could fall down and get hurt even if he is walking beside her, but that doesn’t mean he allowed it to happen.  A father’s unconditional love means that his daughter knows he will pick her up and carry her when it does happen.  So it is with our Father in heaven.  I love that comparison.

I really feel for people who don’t have a father in their lives.  I have a wonderful Daddy.  When I was a little girl he raised hogs, and he would feed them every day by carrying five-gallon buckets of feed to the barn.  I would follow him around with my tiny little bucket, it maybe held a half gallon of feed.  I must have slowed him down, but he was so patient.  In hindsight, it was like it was more important to him that I learn from him, spend time with him.  He has a great capacity for understanding as well.  After my parents moved to their new house, one weekend when I was visiting the dog destroyed my favorite doll.  I was like 20 at the time, perfectly capable of living life without my favorite dolly.  🙂  But my Dad hugged me, let me be upset about it.  Believe it or not, I don’t have a natural capacity for patience.  I work really hard at it.  My first instinct tends to be, “If I can’t have it right now, I guess I don’t want it at all, I’m going to find something else.”  Whatever patience I have, I learned from him.

My point is, I think a good father helps a child to believe in a good Father.  I may have not figured out the “Jesus stuff” until I was in my 20s, but I believed in God the Father ever since I could remember.  It never occurred to me not to trust my dad, not to believe that he loves me.  It was the same with God.  I would imagine if you had issues with trusting your dad, it would be almost impossible, especially as a little kid, to believe in the love of a Father you can’t see and touch.

I’ve been so blessed to have that basic faith that so far has been unwavering.  I’ve never had a moment of thinking, “What if God isn’t real?”  He just is.  The specifics seem to get worked out little by little, such is the lifelong journey of faith.  But that journey is possible because of the basic understanding that God is real, and here, and loving.

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