Included in the worship service at my church, last Sunday was an interpretive dance of the Lord’s Prayer or as it is also called–the “Our Father” prayer. It was so beautifully done! Tears flowed down my face as I watched the dancer and listened to the music and lyrics. In my memory, I was a child again, sitting in a tiny country church with my parents and grandparents. Yet, there was a difference between the feeling that I had back then and the feeling that I had last Sunday.
Back then, I did not realize the depth of love that my Father-God had for me. Back then, I did not pray with the confident expectation that I talked about in last week’s blog post. Back then, I did not feel very much connected to him. Sadly, my heart contained more fear than love–more distrust than faith.
On my morning walk along the lakeshore one day this week, my thoughts were suddenly interrupted by very loud peeping; Looking up, I saw a young osprey peering over the edge of its nest, which was located on top of a high telephone pole. As I continued to watch, its parent flew close to the nest. I thought this bird was going to enter the nest; instead, it flew over the nest. The young bird flapped its large wings but did not move out of the nest. This happened several times. To me it was a beautiful illustration of God’s fatherly patience.
By sending Jesus, he demonstrated to us what it looks like to fly; now, by sending the Holy Spirit, he gives us the power to fly. Yet, he does not kick us out of our nest. With patience, he watches the attempts we make to flap our wings, and with kindness he encourages us to persevere.
As you pray this week, I invite you to meditate on the following Psalm and to ask the Holy Spirit to give you a deeper and personal understanding of Our Father’s love.
The Lord is compassionate and merciful,
slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
9 He will not constantly accuse us,
nor remain angry forever.
10 He does not punish us for all our sins;
he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.
11 For his unfailing love toward those who fear him
is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.
12 He has removed our sins as far from us
as the east is from the west.
13 The Lord is like a father to his children,
tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
14 For he knows how weak we are;
he remembers we are only dust.
15 Our days on earth are like grass;
like wildflowers, we bloom and die.
16 The wind blows, and we are gone—
as though we had never been here.
17 But the love of the Lord remains forever
with those who fear him.
Psalm 103: 8-17 NLT