1How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!—I John 3:1
On June 2, my wife Jennifer gave birth to our baby girl. Her name is Karis. For most of my adult life, I was not sure I wanted a child. One week later, Baby Karis has captured my heart and defined my new world.
When the baby was born I got to be the first one, after my wife, to hold her. I rocked her, held her in my arms, and quietly began singing to her. As the doctor finished up caring for my wife he came to me and said, “Pastor, I have to tell you, I don’t think your preaching will ever be the same.”
I replied, “Probably not.”
I thought, “I hope not.”
During those late nights when you are snuggling that little child to your chest, you have a lot of time to think. One of the things you do is pray for your family. Another thing you do is meditate on what being a good father is. There is nothing like becoming a father to help you grow in your understanding of who God is as our Heavenly Father.
One of the things I learned very quickly as I gazed into my child’s barely able to focus eyes was that there is nothing that she could ever do that could make me love her any less. Would I want bad things to happen to her? No. Would I want her to rebel and make a lot of bad mistakes? Of course not! But no matter what happens, deep down in my heart, I know my love for her can only grow.
The same is true of our Heavenly Father. There is nothing that we have done, or could do, that would make God love us any less. Does he want us to rebel? No. Does he want us to run away from him? Of course he does not. But if we run away from him or rebel against him, he offers us forgiveness and restoration. He loves us more than we will ever know.