The divorce happened when the children were young. She hoped it wouldn’t be too hard on the kids but she watched as her son begged for them to try once more. As young as he was, he felt like he had caused the rift between Mom and Dad, but it just wasn’t so. His tender nature wanted peace and longed for the family to be one. He ached but he didn’t let Mom see the depth of his pain. Dad moved out and moved on.
I don’t know when she first knew the extent of his pain, but by then there was little she could do about it. She tried not to talk about her own pain within his hearing, but she was not always successful. He longed for his father and he loved his mother. He was a tender spirit and hungry for a family. When Dad remarried and then later Mom remarried, he made every effort to fit in so that his desire for a family might actually happen.
When he married, he determined to make things work – at any price. In the beginning, he and his wife got along well. He indulged her. They were a two career couple and all went well until they had a child. As he neared forty, he thought they had developed as a couple and were strong enough to ensure a stable family unit.
After the baby came, she became depressed. Worse yet, they were totally unprepared for the difference in their child rearing philosophy. The change in their relationship hit him like a baseball bat to the gut! The wall between them got higher and wider. One day, she announced that she was no longer interested in maintaining the relationship. His world crashed.
People long to find that one relationship that fulfills and doesn’t wound. Fear of being hurt keeps us from trusting and we isolate or we just have random encounters. Once in a while, someone talks to us about Jesus but skepticism believes it is just one more road to disappointment. No father, mother, or spouse ever proved faithful and by extension God must be the one who was ultimately responsible for the pain. How can we trust the One who calls Himself Father?
Today’s Lesson: What we don’t understand is that God is Love. Really! The love of God is rich and pure and measureless. His loving kindness endures forever. He longs for us more than we long for Him. But like any relationship, He won’t force Himself on us. He waits for us to draw near. Then He reciprocates.
Father risked giving us free-will so we could choose to love Him like He loves us. So the boy who became a man and a father can choose to love Him or not. He may not understand that it is the only answer that will satisfy, If he continues on his own, there will still be a longing in his heart and Father God will never quit longing for Him. He will quicken His servants to pray for the young man, his ex-wife and their child. He will send some to lift up Jesus in their presence and so draw them to Himself.
The condemnation this young father feels will keep him focused on himself. He will lack confidence and will live from his soul. He will hunger for the approval of others. At last, if he runs out of options, falls to his knees and calls on the name of the Lord from his heart and faith enters, the love of Father God will wash over him and he won’t remember why he didn’t call out sooner.
When this happens, it is the beginning of fulfillment of the longing in both this young man’s heart and in Father God’s heart as well.
If you have a loved one who is far away, keep loving them and praying for them. I have received comfort from the song that says, “The boy is reachable; the girl is reachable. To God he’s visible. All things are possible. If God can reach His hand of love through time, Touch an old sinner’s heart like mine, The boy is reachable, I know he’s reachable.”
And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.
I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick . . .
I Sam 2:30 – . . . or those who honor Me I will honor. . .
Oh that they had such a heart in them, that they would fear Me and keep all My commandments always, that it may be well with them and with their sons forever!
O LORD, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will strengthen their heart, You will incline Your ear
But I have trusted in Your loving kindness; My heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.
The fool has said in his heart, “There is no God.”
When You said, “ Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, O LORD, I shall seek.
Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart.
The humble have seen it and are glad; You who seek God, let your heart revive.
When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.