The hardest realization that I ever had to come to was that I didn’t know how to have a father.
I grew up with a great step-dad after my real father walked out on my family, but I still never understood what it meant to be a part of a father – daughter relationship. I would have friends who would talk about their dads in ways that seemed so different from what I was experiencing.
I didn’t really understand that this would be a problem until God started to pursue me, and I wouldn’t let Him in.
I was praising, but not participating in a relationship with Him. I was willing to serve, but not spending time in His presence. I was lonely and broken, but I wouldn’t let any kind of father into my heart because of fear.
I am so thankful that even when I pushed, and shoved, and rejected Him, God still chose to accept, love, and father me.
When I finally realized that there was a longing in my heart that no person, position, or place could fulfill, I was angry. I was so angry because God knew all along that I needed to know Him as a Father, and I didn’t understand that He wasn’t going to force that relationship on me.
I was at a prayer service the night that I finally felt my brokenness in a way that was suffocating and overwhelming. I remember laying on the floor with my hand out and nose full of snot.
I cried and cried because I finally knew what I needed. I prayed over and over again that night for hours,
God, please show me what it feels like to know you as a Father. Just show me.
I was expecting a rush of emotion or a supernatural peace, or maybe even a vision.
I got up, walk out of the chapel, and as I was leaving I heard the sweetest whisper that began the most beautiful journey that I have ever been on,
It takes time.
There’s not just a moment when you realize that your father is who he says he is. You never wake up one day and it just hits you, “hey I have a dad”.
You know that your father is your father because he takes care of you, he provides for you, he protects you, he loves you, and he spends time with you.
The Lord knew that although I had a great step-father at home, I had never seen these things because I had never allowed myself to participate in this kind of relationship. He knew that in order for me to really understand what it meant that He was my Father, I would have to learn.
Little by little God taught me how to trust Him to provide. He taught me how to simply be with Him.
He taught me that I never had to earn His approval because I was His and that was enough for Him to be proud of.
He taught me how to receive love and discipline. He taught me that not only is He my Father, but He is a good, and perfect father.
I understand feelings of rejection. I know loneliness and hurt. I have spent many nights fearful and bitter. But I am choosing to not let my past dictate my identity or my freedom. It’s one thing to be delivered, but another to be free.
I can be adopted into the Kingdom of Heaven through the blood of Jesus, and yet still live as a defeated and helpless orphan.
It took me a while, but I realized that I have a Father. His name is Yahweh, and He is more than I could ever need or imagine. He satisfies every longing. He has broken every wall, chain, and stronghold to get to me and to free me. He has chosen me, and He has made me His child. This is who I am.
Of course, sometimes I still get jealous of families who have it all together. I still hurt that my father chose to not be fully present in my life. I still wish that I had more childhood memories with my dad. But I am learning, and trusting, and falling in love with a Father who is taking me on a journey filled with more adventure, love, and memories to last an eternity.
I don’t have all of the answers, but I do know this: right now you have a Father that is wanting to show you the wonders and miracles that are wrapped up in this beautiful relationship with Him. He wants to hold your hand and teach you how to walk and run in freedom. He wants to give you advice about relationships and put you in time out when you’re being mean to your siblings. He wants to read you stories at night and laugh at your favorite jokes.
Practically, your relationship with God will look different than mine or anyone else’s, but I encourage you that if you are wanting to know Him as a Father get alone, and ask Him to come and show you what this looks like for you and Him.
Cling to the Word and read scriptures out loud if you are having a hard time with the doubtful thoughts in your mind.
Make it a habit of being aware of God in the everyday routine and mundane task.
Get around people who will remind you of who you are in Him.
And let go of the fear, He will never leave you.
We Would Love to Hear From You!
1. Are you having a hard time knowing God as your Father?
2. What is the hardest part about trusting that God is a good Father?
3. How have you seen God as a Father in your relationship with Him.