Thanksgiving was a special time for our family, as my biological dad came up and spent 4 days with us. Not only did the children enjoy their “Paw-Paw”, but I finally had a chance to have conversations with him that were long overdue. See, 36 years ago a boy and girl discovered that a baby was coming. The boy was so afraid of his father and mother that he didn’t tell them about the baby until it had already been born and his rights signed away. The next 30 years of this man’s life were wrought with self-loathing, guilt, bad decisions, and consequences. I heard this story in great detail over desserts and dinners, with my wife by my side. He also told me how he had always been in the shadows, watching me my entire life in Mississippi. Knowing people and having connections, allowed him access to me that shouldn’t have been possible. I didn’t know him, but he knew me.
Hearing this was cathartic to me. Knowing about his fear, helped me. I have dealt with fear issues over the course of my entire life. Fear has kept me from accomplishing things that I have wanted to, whether it was trying out for sports teams or the Voice. Fear has been as close a friend to me as any. Hearing his life story helped me deal with my own in a way. I felt a load lighten a bit.
As I have had time to reflect on this over the last couple of days, I think about God’s love for us. He has always known us, even when we didn’t know Him. He has always been there, but not in the shadows. Rather, He has been there in the light, while we dug ourselves cover in darkness. That is the fierceness of His love for us. I was raised in a great home, with parents who love me dearly. I’ve lacked for nothing in life, thanks be to God, but this encounter filled a hole that had always been there, that I would often refuse to acknowledge. God did something for me, and for him, in this that is surely very timely. I give thanks to God for this gift. All because He loves me…us.
I also think about being adopted to sonship in Christ. He chose us, until we came to a point where we would willingly choose Him.
In this holiday season, we commemorate God sacrificing the crown jewel of heaven to become the Savior of the world. He came that something as simple as a relationship with my biological father could come to fruition, which could only come through the redemption of sin, which could only begin with a baby born in a manger. Makes me think of an old hymn…
Makes me think of an old hymn…
How deep the Father’s love for us
How vast beyond all measure
That He would give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure.
How great the pain of searing loss
The Father turns His face away.
As wounds which mar His Chosen One
Brings many sons to glory.
God bless you all.