My twin 18-year-old daughters came home recently after a long time away at college. It was easy for me to decide what I wanted to do with them. I wanted to sit beside them, talk to them and hear all about their time away at college. I wanted to do things they wanted to do, things that made them happy. Heck I’d go with them to the mall to look at girls shoes and make-up if they wanted.
During their visit Mary Catherine come over on two occasions to sit in my lap and show me something. I was so happy to be with them. The feeling of a father being near his children, especially when you’ve not seen them for a while, (for me) can only be described as hyper-joy, a deep inner joy. We ate dinner as a complete family for the first time in a while that night. We watched “The Office” together and I watched them watch “Gray’s Anatomy”. They came over several times while at home and just hugged me. It’s truly amazing how doing something so simple with someone you love can bring so much satisfaction.
I can’t explain the depths of joy, love and happiness their long-awaited presence brought to my heart. There’s a deep peace and a deep love and satisfaction to be near the ones you love especially when you’ve not seen them for a while.
It’s hard to believe, but, this love I have for my children, as powerful as it is, is only a dim shadow of the love that flows from the heart of God to you and me. I believe His heart is just simply pure love all the time. When we come to Him, frequently or infrequently, I think his heart is sort of like my heart was when I saw my kids come in from college. He is excited. He is elated, he’s ecstatic. I think He just wants to sit together and soak in our presence. Like an earthly father, He also wants to give us good things.
The next time you get a sense of joyous love from being around a really good friend, a spouse or one of your children, remember that this is but a small glimpse of the powerful, kind and tender love God has for you. And we can relax, I mean really relax, in knowing that when we do come home to Him, even if it’s been a while, he is so happy to see us. I’m so glad God is not full of anger and wrath, but full of love, joy, grace and mercy.
Zephaniah 3:17 For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.”