A picture came to me, in my mind’s eye, of a Father holding his child and both were weeping. It was a clear image, which joined heart and mind in understanding. The child was badly injured by her own error…crying in painful agony. The Father was cradling her as she received the consequences of her actions. His heart was breaking, because there was nothing he could do about her choices or her pain. His whispers of love and strong arms would not comfort her. Her pain was too great for her mind to understand that even in the midst of it, she was in the safest and best place she could be…her father’s arms. Her only thought was escape.
The father’s thought was to protect the little girl from the pain she herself had caused. He tried to assure her, to calm her beating heart, to bring peace to her frantic mind…to no avail. So then he simply held her and wept…with her and for her. His heart could barely contain the love he felt in that moment for his little girl. His tears were the expression of that tender heart. He was broken for what he could not prevent, and that made him feel helpless. His whispered words never ceased to encourage and assure her that it would be all right even though she couldn’t comprehend. She soon slept. Deeply. His heart was overcome by her peaceful little face as she finally rested in his arms.
How many times has God been the father and we the child? How many times have we caused ourselves great pain, and he has cradled us in his arms while we wept? When we feel he is distant, we couldn’t be more wrong. He is our very breath. That close. We want to run, yet sometimes in order to receive the best care we have to go through the pain, not avoid it. It is the only way our hearts can be completely healed. In the midst, he supports and encourages. His strong arms wrap us up while we squirm. He has not and will not abandon us. His love is too great for that. He whispers his words of love and tries to soothe our troubled hearts. My question is can you hear him?
(Thanks to Pete Talton for sharing his experience of holding Wesleigh while the doctors worked on her broken arm. I SAW it so clearly and this note is the result. Parenting is where our head knowledge of God’s love becomes heart knowledge…and we suddenly get it.)