Wednesday, November 9, 2016

It's All Papa, All the Time!



2 Peter 3:9
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness.  Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

According to Scripture, the will of a good father is that all of His children - no matter how vile, destructive, perverse, or sinful - would run into His open arms of love through repentance, finding salvation. ~Christa Black Gifford, Heart Made Whole

As I read Chapter Four, The Reconciled Heart, in Gifford's book, Heart Made Whole, I am particularly moved by an anecdote she relates of her then three-year-old son, Moses,' preference of parents.  Moses is for all things "mommy" - from being buckled into his car seat to being snuggled first thing in the morning.

Although her husband, Luke, "takes Moses to the park, rides bikes to get ice cream, and plays with him for hours to develop attachment and relationship - being more engaged as a father than I've ever seen in an earthly man," still, Moses favors Mom every time.

Luke, to say the least, is disheartened and discouraged.  Wouldn't any of us feel this way when the child we love and nurture seems to care little for our ministrations?

As our oldest granddaughter, Virginia Rose, is growing up, my daughter, Sarah, is working outside the home while husband, John, is going back to school.  There are many mornings, afternoons and evenings, when I take care of this little one, and am glad to do it.  I can't begin to count how many diapers I change, how many games we play, how many bottles I replenish, how many cuddles we share.  This Gammie savors and treasures every moment!

Enter Papa, and all that Gammie loving might as well be chopped liver.  It's all Papa, all the time!















Now make no mistake.  I'm thrilled that Virginia loves her Papa so much, but there is that part of me, which has given such unrestrained and constant dedication to her care, that I can't help but feel just a twinge of sadness.  I give Virginia so much love.  Isn't that enough?

And isn't that exactly how God, our heavenly Father, feels when He provides us with riches and blessings beyond measure, yet we run in another direction, seeking something or someone other than Him?

As Gifford says, "Love cannot be forced.  Love is always a choice."

God gave us free will so that we can choose:  whom we love, when we love, how we love.

An amazing and selfless gift, indeed, from the Father, who only wants our whole-hearted love and obedience.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if each and every one of us could turn our whole hearts to our Abba and say with conviction:  "It's all Papa, all the time!"

Amen.

~



For the next five weeks, I am joining fellow Christian bloggers, Jason StasyszenSarah Salter and Glynn Young in a reflective discussion of Heart Made Whole by Christa Black Gifford.  Please feel free to order the book for yourself and join in with us, or simply visit each person to give them feedback.
God bless!

14 comments:

  1. Being a grandfather has been one of the best experiences of my life. It's a wondrous thing how God blesses grandpas.

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    1. Oh, yes, He does, Glynn, that's for sure! Danny has loved every moment of being a grandfather, too, though at first he didn't think he would. Just the whole idea of babies and toddlers. But as you can see by the photos, he was an early convert!
      Love and blessings!

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  2. Hi Martha! It's so true that love can't be forced, and I sure experienced that with my own grandchildren. They all didn't want much to do with me when they were younger ( my one year old grandson in the middle of it now). They have eyes for their mom, that was it.
    I think it's like a test really. Why do I love? Is it so I'll be loved in return, or because I want to be like Christ? It's a hard thing to get to, but that's the thoughts I have. Now? My oldest granddaughter brought a picture of me to preschool for 'N' week. Her clues were: 'she has grey hair, lives far away, and I love her.' Yep, that's me. Nana. I about burst into tears hearing that. So, there's hope for all of us grandparents. And there's hope for us as lovers of our Father too!
    Blessings,
    Ceil

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    1. Ceil, I so love the way you explained it as a test -"Why do I love? Is it so I'll be loved in return, or because I want to be like Christ?" We should all sit up and take notice at that one, and ask ourselves those questions often and honestly!
      And oh, how great it is that your oldest granddaughter wanted to share you at preschool! I would have burst into tears, too. In fact, I did today when Virginia gave me a love note she wrote to me. Maybe it's not all Papa, all the time. :)
      Love and blessings!

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  3. Martha, I love how you stated that love can't be forced; it is always a choice. It's foolish to expect (or demand love) from others--and unhealthy too.

    May we all have eyes for our papa all the time!

    Love and blessings!

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    Replies
    1. Eyes on Papa, all the time. That's the only way to go, Kim!
      Love and blessings!

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  4. I hear ya' about 'it's all Papa,' friend! I linger in the background ... and sooner or later it's my turn!

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    1. We all do get our turn, and I do receive so much love from Virginia. I simply couldn't help but elaborate on this situation though. I think little girls, especially, are drawn to their dads and granddads. It's all healthy!
      Love and blessings!

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  5. just loved your message and the photos. My hubby is Joe ( long story re that name which isn't his name) to three kids and Papa to the newest grandchild. We laugh and call him Papa Joe part of the time!

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    1. Papa Joe - I love that! Right now, I'm "Gammie" to Virginia, "Mimi" to Savannah, and "Ammie" to the littlest one, Alexandra. Thinking I might use this down the blogging road and juxtapose it to the many names of God. Now if that comes together, I definitely know He is in the mix! Lol!
      Love and blessings!

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  6. How precious and sweet this is...and yes...I know God is so pleased when we "run to Papa" with all our love, hurts, boo-boos, and praise. We need to be like that little child more often and climb into His loving arms even when we don't need a thing. Thank you for this delightful post. Love it.

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    1. Yes, Pamela, we all need to run to Papa for our every need. He is the only One who can heal every hurt and cure every pain.
      So glad this post touched your heart!
      Love and blessings!

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  7. Oh yeah, Martha. Felt that sting many times. There is often ingratitude in children as well as their rejecting of us for various reasons. We may not like it, but we keep loving. How much greater is our Father's love. Good reflection here. Thanks so much.

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    1. I hear you, Jason! And you're so right - whether we like it or not in the moment, God calls us to keep right on loving. So glad He loves us no matter what!
      Love and blessings!

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