Not too long ago, I posted an article titled Seeing The Father Through Fatherhood (Part 1). In it I describe how during the birth of my first daughter, I felt like I got a glimpse at how God the Father sees us, as part of his creation. There was something in the sight of pain on my bride’s face, knowing there was more to come, yet still wanting this child to be born as soon as possible, that left me with this feeling that said, “Now you’re beginning to understand what it’s like.”
Since becoming a father of my own children, I feel that the lessons from my heavenly Father never seem to cease. Today I want to talk about a single moment that opened my eyes a little more to how I believe God views us.
A Father, a Daughter and a Table
My daughter was probably between six and eight months old. Strong enough to where she was able to pull herself up onto her feet while holding onto a small coffee table, but not much more.
I had just gotten home from work and was sitting on the floor with her while talking to my wife who was sitting on the couch. My daughter was just kind of fumbling around, taking notice of things that were lying around and not much else.
Not out of the ordinary, she grabbed onto the ledge of the coffee table, pulled herself up onto her feet and continued to play with whatever she could get her hands on (Which wasn’t much). She then made a few ‘;shimmies’ to the left in an attempt to reach for something else, but in the process lost her balance and proceeded to speed face first towards the floor.
Sitting there, watching all this transpire, I noticed the slip in her step and the proceeding fall. Without much thought or effort I simply reached out, grabbed her body and adjusted her fall so that instead of landing on her face, she landed on her bottom.
With just that little action, she was saved from a bit of pain and we were saved from needing to comfort a crying daughter. As she hit the ground, she simply leaned over and continued her play routine of grabbing whatever she could to play with, totally unaware of what her father just saved her from.
The Father in our Stumbles
In that moment I realized two things. First, my daughter didn’t acknowledge what I had just done for her, because my action was so subtle she didn’t even notice it. Second, I rarely acknowledge what God does for me, because his actions are often so subtle I don’t even notice them.
God the Father loves us so much, and John 3:16 should give us no reason to ever doubt that. But do we even begin to realize the small things he does to protect us, save us or perhaps teach us a lesson?
We tend to only focus on the negatives events in life, such as:
- If only you had left one minute sooner, you wouldn’t have gotten into a car accident.
- If only you’d been born in to a different family, you’d be better off.
- If only you’d married your high school sweetheart, you would be happily married.
While we canot prove every event where God intervenes in our lives, I firmly believe that there have been many things that he has saved us from. Things like:
- If you had not been delayed two minutes by a faulty microwave, you would’ve been in a fatal accident.
- If you were born into a different family, you would have been born in an impoverished nation where you would likely starve to death.
- If you had married your high school sweetheart, you would be a miserable alcoholic whose spouse constantly cheated on you behind your back.
God is sovereign, meaning he is in control. While sometimes his interventions within his creation are plainly seen, I believe that most of the time they are hidden.
Perhaps in our prayers, while we are thanking the Father for all the obvious things he does in our lives, we should also say a heartfelt thanks for all the things we leave unnoticed or unacknowledged.