Introducing… My {Dad}!

Today is day 31!

I almost can’t believe I made it… 31 days of confessing the truth of who I am… that if I am anything good, or gifted, or right… it’s because of my dad.

And where (not if) I am found lacking or wanting… it is to remind me, continually, that I really am no one apart from him and the lessons he teaches me.

So today is the day when I get to introduce you to my dad.

His name is Elohim. And El Shaddai. And Adonai. Also El Olam, Jehova Jireh, and Yahweh.

He is known by all of these and many more.

Moshia’

Hamoshia’

Savior and Deliverer.

Jesus. Yeshua. Salvation.

Yes, this is my dad… father to all who will have him.

You see… my dad… the Creator of all things… looked down upon this creation and saw that we would never be able to live up to the perfect standards of a perfect God.

It was impossible.

Not because He made it so… but because we chose our own way… the very first of us. When given the chance, chose imperfection. Something we’ve been striving against ever since.

In our jobs, in our homes, in our friendships and relationships… always missing the mark and despairing it. Always disappointed with the inadequacies of others and ourselves.

And then we blame dad like it’s his fault.

Even if I had been the first created… I would have failed as well. And if not I, then one of my children. It was bound up in us when we heard the words “freedom” and interpreted it to mean “do what makes you happy, even if it conflicts with what is good for you.” And we fell.

And fall always.

So this dad of mine… taking note of our imperfections and his longing to have us in fellowship with him eternally, devised a plan. Of course, this was a plan he’d held before creation… knowing even then that to offer us “free will” was to set the stage for his own grieved heart and separation.

Sacrifices had been made since the first mistake… animals slaughtered and offered, a blood sacrifice to cover up the error of our ways. But it only lasted as long as the smoke. And then we needed to do it again, and again, and again. And it still wasn’t quite sufficient. Because once the smoke cleared… there we were again… his desperately beloved child on the other side of the prison doors of our own insufficiencies.

And his heart broke.

So he took the piece of himself he’d wrapped in flesh, waiting for this moment, and sent him to live a human life.

Called him Son.

Jesus. Yeshua. Salvation.

Because only God Himself is good enough to pay the debt we owe. Our own lives are the penalty for our wandering ways. And wander we have…

This God-man lived among us, called us friends, spoke the language of humans while living the life of one.

We could hear him and not tremble.

We could see him and not become blind.

We could touch him and still live.

And this deceived many. We expected the prophesied Messiah to come as a warrior… and destroy the known world in our favor.

Instead, he came as a child.

And an Activist. A Doctor. A Coach, Advisor, and friend. A Counselor. An Advocate. A Gardener and lover of all creatures. A Teacher. A Public Speaker. A Healer. A Mediator. Peace.

Savior.

Yes, this God in flesh came to be our final sacrifice.

Knowing that the Deceiver would deceive and we would hate him. Hate him for flipping our world upside down… for not coming as we’d expected. For upstaging us.

For being right.

To the cross he marched, with joy set before him.

Because he knew that he could not be conquered… not even by death.

And he took upon himself all of our inadequacies, insufficiencies, mistakes… our crimes against the world, ourselves, and Him.

He wrapped himself in us… and for a moment, a dad lost sight of his son… and saw only humanity behind a locked prison door of our own doing.

The blood spilled.

The sacrifice was given.

But it wasn’t over.

The thing is… you can’t kill God.

Nietzsche was wrong… God is not dead. (Rest assured that Nietzsche knows his error.)

The price was paid. The debt covered. The blood of our Yeshua, Savior, lasts eternally… beyond the fading smoke of a sacrificial fire. Into the errors yet to be committed. The grievances yet to be filed. It’s already there.

So that when dad looks upon us.. he sees his children… perfected.

Able to cross the threshold of his kingdom, dine at his feast-filled table, and laugh until our tummies hurt.

Forever.

If you want to.

Thing is, you still have that free-will. The chance to join the party or start your own.

The invitation has been sent.

He’ll give you whatever you want… forever. If you want to live an orphaned life… you’ll get to spend it that way eternally.

You want to be adopted by a loving dad… my dad… well, he’s waiting for you in the courtroom. Documents are signed. His oath has been sworn. He’s just waiting for yours.

What are you going to do?

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNR6zcoLLfs?rel=0]

One of my favorite bands, Downhere… and a great song… take a look! 🙂

  • First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus… (1 Timothy 2:1-5)
  • And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)
  • For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. (Romans 10:10)
  • For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. (Galatians 3:26)
  • 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. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. (John 3:16-18)
To learn more about 31 Days in 2012 or view other 31 Dayers blogs, click here.

I’m spending 31 days writing about my confessions and the lessons {Dad} has taught me. This is day 31 of 31 Days in 2012.

What {Dad} Sees

“Mommy”

Big brown eyes blink up at me.

“I want to take off all of my skin on top… and have just the skin that’s underneath.”

My heart picks up a pace. My mind flashes back to being a young little girl who was told she was too fat… and longed for a zipper on this wretched flesh… so I could step out of my body and into something much slimmer.

But she’s only three.

And God-forbid that her little heart, mind, or soul begin to believe these lies about herself yet.

Or ever.

I choke back my fears. “Why, sweetie?”

“Because this skin has too many owies.”

I sigh relief and silence a chuckle.

Indeed, my little love is… learning how to manage and control all of her various appendages. She also has two older brothers.

Those two combined (plus an apparent allergy to mosquito bites) make for a skin that has quite a few bruises, scrapes, bumps, and marks.

But I don’t see them.

I only see her. Her precious cheeks that beg me for kisses.

Her mommy-melting big eyes.

Her plethora of facial expressions… communicating every thought in a wrinkle of the nose, a twist of a lip, or a creasing of the eye…

He contagious giggle, her loud belly laugh…

That is what I see.

My princess.

But she sees blemishes. An undesirable skin.

And she wants to take it off.

Don’t we all have those moments? Things we’d change, remove, enhance about ourselves?

A number of years ago I went on a silent retreat with some missionary teammates of mine. The weekend was arranged in such a way that we had total freedom to just listen. To God, to our thoughts. To rest.

During one of my prayer times I saw an image of myself lying before Jesus. He came to me and wanted to give me a massage. (Why not, right?) Not my typical image of Jesus… masseuse. But that is how he presented myself and the vision carried on.

He began a head to toe massage… lovingly, tenderly… while my insecure self tolerated his touch.

He began to massage a part of my body that I abhor.

And he said, “This is my favorite part.”

I began to convulse… in my vision and in real life… with the kind of shuddering that only deep confusion, pain, and healing can do to a person when combined in full blast.

It didn’t make sense.

How could he love this part of me that I hated. Because I’d once been told that this part of me was noticeably imperfect. A defect. A curse.

And here he was… loving it.

“I’ve created this part of you with special purposes”

It took some time for my mind to calm and Jesus, in my vision, continued on without seeming to notice my physical response.

The vision ended and I laid there in such solemnity. I could no longer hate what he loved. It seemed… wrong. That he created me… with this piece of me… on purpose. For good. I couldn’t understand it.

But I believe him.

And to this day, I look in the mirror and am always tempted to hold contempt for this part of me.

Then his words, his face, his touch, his confidence… flash back.

And I find love.

For myself. For my body. For the time I’m given in this shell. Purposed.

And I think back on my daughter. And I know my daddy sees me. Beyond all of my  bumps and scrapes and bruises and blemishes. He sees me.

And he loves what he sees.

He loves you.

And he loves what he sees.

Can you?

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand— when I awake, I am still with you.

Psalm 139: 13-18

To learn more about 31 Days in 2012 or view other 31 Dayers blogs, click here.

I’m spending 31 days writing about my confessions and the lessons {Dad} has taught me. This is day 25 of 31 Days in 2012.

My {Dad}- Dream Whisperer

I looked down at their precious faces.

Serene.

Peaceful.

Safe.

I ponder the dreams they must be having… and all the things I want to say to them. To somehow enter into this moment without disrupting it.

I stroke a cheek.

Kiss a nose.

I lean down and whisper, “You are uniquely made. Beautiful for who you are. You are more precious to me than any earthly thing. You delight my heart. You make each moment worth living over and over. Forgive me for the moments I’ve missed. For my own selfishness. Innocent mistakes. Thank you for loving me so deeply. So freely. May you live and receive every blessing of God. May you choose love, patience, kindness, gentleness, self-control, faithfulness, joy, and peace.”

And on I go.

Sweet affirmations of love whispered into their ears while they sleep.

Dancing their way into the mind of the sleeper… speaking into the visions of their night.

Brightening darkened skies, cries to laughter, equipping the hero of their slumber.

And I smile.

Such truth seeps its way through this realm into another, influencing the deep images of the subconscience with hope, faith, and love… to awaken the dreamer with a new sense of belonging, value, and security.

Unexplained.

A dream that has embraced them tenderly.

By the dream whisperer.

Confession: If ever I’ve dreamed a beautiful dream… it’s been because my dad has whispered these sweet-somethings into my ear while I slept.

Words of tenderness, affection, hope, and promise.

Sometimes words of warning.

Often words of encouragement.

Words that blend my reality with eternity.

In a prophetic song of gratitude for what isn’t and great joy for what is.

Ethereal experiences that awaken me to far more than my day-to-day of laundry, dishes, and training children.

The Dream Whisperer.

My dad.

Stroking my hair, kissing my cheek, singing his father’s heart and hopes into my depths.

Easing my fears, welcoming my fears… replacing them with a father’s protection.

Sometimes he sits beside silently and lets the dreams free as they will be… weaving and winding, tossing and churning, mysteries of the night as the mind unravels its secret thoughts. Its hidden meanderings.

Only to wrap me in his arms when the terror brings me to.

Reminding me that he is always there… even in the ugly. The scary. The awkward.

Waiting to wrap me up.

To remember how desperately I need his comfort. His dream-whispers.

So I ask each night, “Daddy… will you sit with me again as I sleep? Whispering love into my dreams?”

And he smiles and comes. Delighted to be invited.

And his whispers begin.

When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.

Proverbs 3:24

To learn more about 31 Days in 2012 or view other 31 Dayers blogs, click here.

I’m spending 31 days writing about my confessions and the lessons {Dad} has taught me. This is day 18 of 31 Days in 2012.