In the Father’s Lap

      I had a dream I was walking by a house and I became aware this was the house where God lived. I was so excited I ran to the door to enter when I was stopped by a frail thin man who called himself “The keeper of the house.” He discouraged me from entering expressing his fear of the One who lived there. This man claimed he had kept the house for years but had never entered. I was persistent in my desire to enter then the man inquired if I thought God’s forgiveness was real. Very confused, I looked at the man not understanding how he could have been so close to God and yet never known His forgiveness.

     I entered the house, with the man right on my heels. He would periodically glance over my shoulder to steal a quick glimpse, then retreat to his crouched position behind my back. Once we entered, we made our way into an industrial kitchen where there were several peanut-butter and jelly sandwiches. I was hungry so I grabbed one and began to eat it. The man panicked and instructed me to put it back stating, “God might know we’ve been here.” I responded, “He’s God, He already knows we’re here.”

     All of the sudden, I felt drawn to enter a particular room and I knew in my spirit it was where God was. I entered the room and directly in front of me was an extremely over-sized well worn blue reading chair. Even though it appeared the chair was empty, I knew that was where God was sitting, so without hesitation, I crawled up into the chair and sat. The man did not follow me to the blue chair. Instead, he chose to sit on the corner of a couch which was located the farthest away from the blue chair. I looked at the man and said, “Don’t you want to sit in the Father’s lap?” I then sensed God smiling at me and looking down He responded, “The Father’s lap, huh? That’s the perfect place for you to be.”  

     In my dream I took full advantage of being God’s child. I entered the house without feeling the need to announce my arrival. I took advantage of His provisions laid out in the kitchen and I entered His presence with confidence. I knew God wanted to spend time with me as much as I wanted to spend time with Him.

The man however, had not embraced the blessings of God. He remained on the outskirts of God’s presence, never accepting His gift of forgiveness or partaking in the provisions provided. When he did enter the room with God, he chose to keep his distance. Rather than seeing God as a loving Father, he viewed God as a tyrant, fearful He might make God angry

Too often this is how people view God. They deny themselves the privileges which come with being a child of God. God wants to bless you, He desires to provide for you, and He longs for you to be in His presence. After all, the Father’s lap is the perfect place for you to be. 

Advertisements

Warrior or a Child

I am seriously about to show my age, so hang on. 

In the 80’s Twila Paris sang a song entitled “Warrior is a Child”. It was in my early adolescent through my teenage years that I absolutely loved this song. It ministered to me and became an anthem for my life. At the time I was unable to completely evaluate my life circumstances at a level which allowed me to truly comprehend the reason this song was so important to me. I just remember feelings as if I could relate to the words being proclaimed through the lyrics. Glancing back on those years, it has become more evident to me as to why this song meant so much.

I have included a link to the song “Warrior is a Child” I would encourage you to take the time to listen to words, it might help in making sense of what follows. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRNFf3ykQvM

I consider myself fortunate to have been raised a pastor’s kid (pk). I do not begrudge the experiences or the lessons learned while in that role. As blessed as I was to be a pk, it was not without its difficulties. There were certain expectations placed on the pk that were not requirements for other children in the church. As the pk I was expected to set an example for the other church kids. I was told by church members how to act and behave. Restrictions were placed on me because certain church members did not believe it was appropriate behavior for a pk, even though the behavior was not a sin or a bad choice. I was told on more than one occasion and by more than one member I was expected to be the example.

I accepted the role and did my best to meet the expectations set before me; all of them; by every person. I adopted a warrior’s mentality and I fought to be everything everyone wanted me to be. I spoke what I was told to speak and when other children were out playing, I sat on the pew because that was what was expected of me. I was told far too frequently I was the perfect child, a perfect example; perfect. This only created additional pressure to maintain the warrior mindset so I could live up to the expectations people had of me. I felt I always had to be strong and brave, and I could never appear vulnerable, show weakness, or be anything less than perfect.

It is difficult, no it is impossible to be perfect, and at times I grew weary from the upkeep. However, I could not reveal my weariness for that would shatter the image of perfection. The pressure created the impression people would not love me if I failed to meet their expectations. In my mind the world saw me as a perfect little warrior, but I only saw myself as a worn, weary, and imperfect child. Yet, it was as a child, in my bedroom, with the music cranked up so my parents could not hear me cry that I called out to God through the tears and He heard me. It was in those moments I felt I could be who I really was, an exhausted little girl reaching to her Father for strength, love, and acceptance. It was in those moments I was comforted my God’s love and received the strength to face another day. It was in those moments I learned of God’s unconditional love and acceptance.

As I have matured in age and my relationship and understanding of God, I have learned to focus more on who God desires me to be and less on the expectations of others. I am no longer a warrior or a child, but rather, a warrior and a child. I am the King’s kid, I can march against the gates of hell and be victorious, I can speak things that are not as though they were, I can say to the mountain move and it must move, but I can only access the power that makes these things possible by embracing my identity as a child, a child of God. Only as a child of God can I truly be a warrior. When I tap into God’s power, authority, and peace, I can be who He has designed me to be, a warrior and a child.