Friday, January 28, 2011

Only Children

"God loves each of us as if there were only one of us." St. Augustine

I've often laughed that I raised three only children. I am an only child. It's been easy at times to understand the concept that God loves each of us as if we were His only child. Possibly a little self-absorbed, but easy. When I pray I just know He is listening intently to what I am saying and really caring about the answer to my prayers. That "feeling" has made it much easier to go to Him in prayer, to expect to see the answers to those prayers. If I step back from that easy relationship and look at the complexity of it all it really is too much for me to comprehend.

There are so many of us, there are so many problems and concerns and cares--how can He hear my singular prayer about my minuscule problem? That's when I think of my own children. They are all so different. They lead very, very different lives and have their own unique problems and concerns. Some they share, some I can only imagine or discern. Yet each of my children's lives are of utmost importance to me. I want to know if they are happy or sad, if they are getting enough rest and food, if their relationships are fulfilling or stressful. I want to know that every step they are taking in their lives is leading them on a journey that will be satisfying as they look back. I want to see them become caring people to the less fortunate, sensitive to the hurting and loving to the unlovable. I want them to freely communicate their cares to me. I desperately want to see them in a relationship with the Lord that will sustain them for all of eternity. When I think on these things I realize how God thinks of each of us. If I, a mere mortal mother, have these feelings for my own children how much more the eternal God must have for His children!

"He is always thinking about us. We are before His eyes. The Lord's eye never sleeps, but is always watching out for our welfare. We are continually on His heart." C.H. Spurgeon

"Even before God created the heavens and the earth, He knew you and me, and He chose us! You and I were born because it was God's good pleasure." Kay Arthur

Can you imagine that? I can on a finite level, but only because He so graciously put those same feelings on a smaller scale in me for my own children. Have you known that kind of love? Did your parents listen and love and care? Did you know that when you talked they really, really listened? Or, maybe you can relate as I do, because you know the depths of love you have for your children. No matter what your experiences, no matter what your past, I hope this new year brings you to a place with God that you want to draw closer then you ever have dared before. If you have had no relationship, I hope you will begin. James 4:8 says, "Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you." We draw near to God when we understand and accept John 3:16, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." God made the way for those of us who are so imperfect to draw near to Him in all of His perfection through Jesus Christ, His Son.

If you have accepted Christ as your Savior but you still don't feel the closeness, you still don't feel like an only child in His kingdom of so many children; I pray you will continue that drawing near by reading His word, the Bible. No matter how inferior you feel today or how many doubts you have that God could care about you in so personal a way, I pray that you step out in faith by praying--casting all of your cares and concerns upon Him. Talk to Him! Start a prayer journal, write down the prayers AND the answers to your prayers that He provides you. I think you will be astonished by the depths of His caring, the abundance of His love. Then I hope you will share with us your journey.

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