A Video Version
I want to tell you a true story:
One day I had a conversation with my friend Linda. I asked what her God concept was and she began a litany of the typical phrases one might expect to hear. “Oh, He’s kind and loving and forgiving,” and on and on.
I stopped her at one point and said, “That is all well and good, but what do you really think about God?
She thought for a moment and said …
“I think God is mad at me.”
I asked and she continued.
“Once, when Jen (her only child) was five, I was boiling some water on the stove. She went over to the pot when I wasn’t looking, reached for it and poured the water on her head. God must hate me to let something like that happen.”
How was I to respond to that? Of course, Linda could have been more alert; she could have turned the handle toward the back of the stove, but she didn’t. The curiosity of her five-year-old ruled the day and this horrible incident happened. Linda’s daughter survived this incident and is now a grown woman.
I suppose I could think God hates me because I gain ten pounds after eating a box of Snickers candy bars. I could – but really …
Sometimes, if we get too close to the flame we get burned. But God doesn’t push us into the flame you see.
I think the finest example of how God views us is told in the parable of the prodigal son. The key word here is “parable”, for this is an illustrative story told by Jesus to demonstrate how much God loves us.
In my understanding of this story, the son was restored to his rightful place as a SON, not as a slave or servant. He expected to have to live with the pigs. He was invited back into the palace.
What he got was restoration. He was given the best robe, a special ring, new sandals, and a banquet with the best food, the best drink and great merriment. Read the full story in Luke 15:11-23.
The words the son heard were the same words God offers to each of us.
Welcome home my son, my daughter. Come on up to the big house where you belong. The covers are turned down, a warm bath is waiting for you, and there is plenty of food on the table.
That sounds like an accepting God to me. He’s not mad at all. He’s offering love, and a place at the table.
We are often compared to sheep in the scriptures. Sheep are not the brightest animals alive. I saw this for myself once. A stick was placed in front of the lead sheep and she jumped over it as did the next five sheep. I removed the stick and the rest of the flock jumped at exactly the same spot, even though the stick was no longer there.
And yet God loves us. Psalm 23 is a great example of God’s thoughts toward us in comparison to sheep.
Hold these thoughts
close to your hear
~God IS Love.
~God IS Grace.
~God IS Forgiveness.
Is God mad at us?
Not even a little bit!
That is one of the most encouraging thoughts one could hear.
We are loved.
We are accepted.
We are cherished.
God the Father is very fond of you and me. (Brennan Manning)
Thanks be to God.
Offering Words of
One Word at a Time