It is interesting to listen to a person respond to the invitation to “describe God”. Try it! When you close your eyes and imagine standing before Him, what does He look like?

A portrait of a man lit with only a hair light and a background light.

Is your image of God one who looms tall above you or sits in an extra large throne chair looking down at you with a furrowed brow, ready to pronounce judgement on your sinful, sorry life? Is he impossible for you to imagine, distant and too far removed from you to see up close? Is your image of God one who sits in a large, ample rocking chair and invites you to curl up safe and snugly in his lap? Is your image of God one who is active and present beside you at each moment during the day?

Now Your Earthly Father

Now that you have your visual image of God identified, think for a moment about how that image might mirror your early experience and relationship with your earthly father.

Many times, little ones come to know about and understand God through how they experience their parents.

When children grow up in harsh, demanding, punitive or abusive homes, God may seem like the harsh, punishing judge. For those whose father was absent, God may seem mysterious or unreachable. Those who experienced a close and nurturing relationship with their father may sense that God is strong but approachable and safe.

how you parent

As Christian parents, consider that you are – whether you want to be or not – a representation of God to your children. Remember to love them as God loves us.

Here’s how that might look:

  • love them even when they don’t love you back
  • love them even when they disrespect you
  • being there for them even when they have disappointed you
  • don’t hover, but allow them to make mistakes from which they learn and grow
  • discipline them consistently out of love instead of punishing with an angry spirit
  • love them without condition, even when they are not very lovable
  • always assure them of your unbreakable bond of commitment to love them for life, no matter what.

Our Father God is all of these things and more for us every day without fail. What a model He has given as a Father!

On the days when you aren’t very God-like in your parenting, take heart. Your Father is there to listen to your confession, to forgive, to restore and to love you. Even if that’s not what you would expect from your earthly father.

LFS counselors are gifted at helping people resolve past hurts that keep them stuck and unable to experience the full abundance of life that is available to them in Christ Jesus. Call us. We can help!

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