Nearly five years ago, my wife, Lauren, and I became parents for the first time when our daughter, Ashlyn Alexandra, was born. Three years later, we welcomed her sister, Madison Amore, into the world and into our family. To say being a father has changed my life would be an understatement. To say being a father has deepened my understanding of God’s love would be a dramatic understatement.
Before becoming a parent, I thought I knew God in that I understood He loved me and desired a relationship with me. I knew He was kind, and gracious, and merciful and loving. I knew these things in my head. But now, I understand them in my heart. Being a father has gifted me with this first-hand glimpse into how deeply God must love each one of us. It’s as if my spiritual eyes are being opened all over again.
Being a parent has even changed the way I worship. From the moment I met our girls, I have been compelled to love them without condition, without reservation. No strings attached. It’s supernatural, and it has changed the way I hear and sing even my own songs. Every lyric of every song – “Love Ran Red,” “Indescribable,” “Good, Good Father”, you name it – is this effort to understand and articulate the incomparable love God has for us, His children, and how personally He wants to relate to us.
In Romans 5, scripture expresses,
But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. — Romans 5:8, ESV
While we were sinners, still mired in our darkness, God showed His complete love to us through Jesus and the cross.
Now, as a father, perhaps for the first time, the reality of God’s love is sinking in. There is nothing, nothing, my daughters could ever say or do that would keep me from loving them or wanting to be their father and friend. Nothing. I believe God feels the same way about us.
Editor’s note: Did you know that one of the world’s favorite worship pastors wrote a children’s book? And that it’s based upon the wildly popular worship song “Good, Good Father” which has topped the Billboard chart for Christian music. Enjoy this video of Chris Tomlin sharing how this book came to be!
How has parenting shaped your understanding of God’s love? What does it mean to you to have a “Good, Good Father”? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!
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