When I became a dad, my perception of who God the Father is changed pretty drastically. Now, every night I tuck in my girls and we go through a big routine. Maybe I have a soft spot based on my fear of the dark growing up that I talked about in my last post. Maybe, I am just a softy as my wife likes to call me.
There are two truths to these times and I will start with the simpler truth. Often, part of this routine if for me as much as it is for my little girl. Every night after I put her in bed, she will say “daddy, sit” and point to the bed. And I usually sit there for about 5 – 10 minutes. It is for me, I enjoy the stillness. I enjoy the quiet and I enjoy the moment of peace where ideas and thoughts come to me. This simple post included. That is for me. It is often the only 10 – 20 minutes, I actually feel disconnected from technology and away from the noise that is daily life. That is a time for me.
And then there is the part that is for her, and it made me think of the Lord, our Father. It is simply this. He’s in the room. You see, as I sit there listening to my daughter breathe and toss and turn, I do not always respond to her. Sometimes, the darkness in the room hides her ability to see me and she will start to cry. I often remain silent. I do not rush in and calm her, nor do I speak. I simply sit and listen. It hurts. It is hard not to solve her problem of fear and re-asssure her that “daddy’s there”, and this is how my perspective on God has changed.
Just like she wants to cry out for me, I often cry out for Him. I often question why I am scared in the darkness. We all do don’t we? I cry out for him and doubt He is there, but He is in the room. He is always THE Father and He is helping us to grow. He is in the room. He hears the cries, and while it may be naive, I like to believe that on some small scale it hurts when He cannot simply rush in and calm the fears, but we must grow.
The nights I let my little girl cry for me are hard, but she must learn that even in the darkness, I will be there in the morning. She must learn that we have to go through scary moments in order to grow. That while it is scary and hard…your father will never give you more than you can handle. And we know that this is true. As a parent, you learn to become in tune with your children and you learn their cries. You learn the ones that are scarier than I simply need comfort. You learn the ones that are pleas for help…and so you intervene.
As I have been a father my faith has deepened and been stretched because, there are lessons that you cannot learn until you are a parent. There are passages in scripture that take on a whole new meaning when viewed through the eyes of a parent. As a dad, I see my heavenly father differently and while it may be selfish, He becomes more human to me. I sympathize as He hears His son cry out on the cross in the darkness.
I see him sitting in the corner hoping that His son will remember that He is in the room.
And we all have this same blessing and gift. We are all welcome to scream and fuss and cry out for the father, but we must also remember that even in the silence…He is in the room!