“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called Children of God.” (1 John 3:1 ESV)
Autumn days are just around the corner. Truly, my favorite time of the year. A break from the summer heat. Excitement of football games. Cool crisp mornings. Pumpkin flavored everything!
And schools are back in session.
This fall marks the fifth year moving a daughter into her desired college living space. Five years ago was the last college move for my oldest daughter and the first one made on “our own”. No daddy to help. This year marks the last college move for me as my second daughter begins her senior year. It was particularly hard as I struggled once again with not only the physical efforts a move takes, but the emotional toll of watching another daughter achieve a big accomplishment without daddy here to cheer her on. It is so easy to hurt for the moments his absence is unequivocally felt.
As per custom, during move-in weekend, we take a drive through campus. There is always lots of hustle and bustle with incoming freshmen and returning students moving into dorms and apartments. Each excited to begin a new chapter in their lives. I share in their excitement, really, I do. But, a sadness creeps over me as I observe all the helping dads on site. I don’t mind saying, it still hurts to see daughters telling their dads where to take their items and watch them smiling and relishing this moment of independence. I can’t help but to let tears fall as I yearn for my girl’s dad to be present, not only for these moves, but for their lives. I yearn for them to have him here to share these exciting times, to hear his input from questions they have, provide protection from fears and comfort when things don’t go as planned.
Tears fall. Heart aches.
In the midst of the hurt, I hear His still quiet whisper,
“and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:18 ESV)
“I love them. I am their Father. My love will never leave, nor forsake.” His whispers assure me of their Kinship to Him. In the years of college attendance, I know that our Father God has walked closely with my girls. He has been their protector and comforter. He has been faithful in their journey to move forward.
I am now more aware of moments that reach out to cause pain from what we no longer have. I call them “joy robbers”. Much like a thief creeping into your home to rob you of your belongings, these fears, doubts and why me’s invade our thoughts and hearts to rob us of joyous living. What a comfort it is to truly know the love which God has for us. Romans 8:15 says “and by Him we cry Abba, Father.”
Abba, Father. Don’t you just love that! It just resonates love.
What a privilege it is to be called a son or daughter of God. When we experience great pain, we must actively guard our hearts from negative invasions that cause us to question His love for us. Can you say even in the midst of a painful event that God is good? If so, you are living under the Abba love of God. If you struggle to answer yes, I encourage you to search scripture for assurance of His love. There are many verses that speak of the Father’s love for us. My favorites include: Deuteronomy 32:10, Psalm 68: 5-6, John 14:16, and 1 John 3:1.
My heart radiates joy as I watch my daughter’s seek the kinship of Abba, Father. I know they miss their earthly father every day, but trusting in their Heavenly Father is how they are choosing to live.
Heavenly Father, I thank You so much for the love You lavish on us so we can be Your child. I pray You will protect our hearts from the negativities life can deliver us and find the joyous life You desire for us. Amen.