Thursday, May 7, 2009

Basking In The Simplicity Of Father’s Affection


In recent days, I have grasped Father’s presence more and more. I think because I am learning how to rest in His love and affection, and trust that He has my best interest at heart. I don’t have to trust Him or love Him back, but it’s the freedom that I have to choose to love Him that is so attractive. I find it when someone is told what to do, or commanded, that person is less likely to want and desire to do what they are told to do, but only out of guilt or fear of what will happen to them if they don’t conform. In the same sense, I am so grateful and privileged that I am not forced to love Father, or be His, but it’s a choice that I freely made with no obligation, fear or guilt associated with it! With a sense of gratefulness and honor, I have accepted His invitation to be His. I sometimes wonder why Father’s love and the invitation of Life that he gives freely are constantly being confused for something other than what it really is… His love is not a commandment; His life he offers is not something we have to put forth effort to gain. The more I think about this, I think man has made God way more complicated to understand than he truly is! He desires to love us and to pour His affection on us, and for us to accept Him, but never in a forceful manner or in a conforming way. I would give anything to see what Jesus was really like when he was on earth. His character and presence was probably so astounding that it would be hard not to want to be like Him. But somewhere in the mix of religion, that image I think has been lost or ruined, and the realness of Father and who He truly is has been over shadowed by man’s ideologies and agenda’s that take way too much effort and time that never brings forth any lasting fulfillment.

From Matthew chapter 6 in the Message

If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don't you think he'll attend to you, take pride in you, and do his best for you? What I'm trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God's giving. People who don't know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God’s-reality, God’s-initiative, God’s-provisions. Don't worry about missing out. You'll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.

I found this on a friend’s facebook page. I love this because he found the Message version of this scripture and it truly captures the real meaning of rest and giving up effort! It’s so profound to think that in doing nothing for God or for myself does probably more for my relationship with Him then scrambling around like a busy work bee in efforts to look good to God or in hopes to accomplish something! It’s so easy to rest if we just allow ourselves to dive deep in the simplicity of Father’s affection.

8 comments:

Rich said...

Nicole,

I really enjoyed what you shared here, thanks!

here is a quote from a new entry I will have up on my blog soon.

Blessings to you in His love.

"I love this illustration Brennan Manning uses in his book, “Abba’s Child” that so graphically points to what I see the Father has for each of those He has apprehended in his love.
“As John leans back on the breast of Jesus and listens to the heartbeat of the Great Rabbi, he comes to know Him in a way that surpasses mere cognitive knowledge.

What a world of difference lies between knowing about someone and knowing Him! We may know all about someone-name, habits, place of birth, family origin, educational background, habits, appearance-but all those vital statistics tell us nothing about the person who lives and loves and walks with God.”

“In a flash of intuitive understanding, John experiences Jesus as the human face of God who is love. And in coming to know who the Great Rabbi is, John discovers who he is-the disciple Jesus loved. Years later, the evangelist would write, ‘In love there is no fear, but fear is driven out by perfect love: because fear is to expect punishment, and anyone who is afraid is still imperfect in love.”

Nicole said...

Good Stuff Rich! Thanks for sharing that!!! I love what is said at the very bottom:

"In love there is no fear, but fear is driven out by perfect love: because fear is to expect punishment, and anyone who is afraid is still imperfect in love."

We will never come to grips with Father's real affection or love if fear is tagging along behind us. That will always keep us distant from Him in one way or another...

Joel B. said...

Sweet! I'm going to be sharing this post with several friends.

Nicole said...

Aww! Thanks Joel! I have found that rest is the best place to be when one wants and desires to be close to Father!!! Bask in the simplicity of Father's affection my friend, you will not be disappointed!

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