Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Father’s Maternal Love

As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; and you will be comforted over Jerusalem. Isaiah 66:13 NIV

There are highly educated, deeply spiritual people of both genders who refer to God as “She” and “Mother,” and although I find it somewhat distracting, it doesn’t make them wrong and me right. God is infinitely more than we can imagine. More intelligent, more broad-minded, more loving, compassionate, forgiving, and accepting. Just more. His ways are higher than my ways. With that in mind, and Genesis 1:27, that God created both male and female in His image, I submit that God is not confined to gender as we perceive it. God is spirit. His appearance is defined by His character (Exodus 34:6, 7; 1 John 3:1; 1 John 4:8).

Not every human mother deserves the honors we are commanded to pay them (Exodus 20:12). Nor is every woman who yearns to be a mother, able to bear children or raise a family. Parent/child relationships are only an ideal, pointing to the real: Creator/creature. (He could have created and populated the world without parents of any species—no eggs, just adult chickens!) God is powerful, protective, far-seeing, and wants the best present and future for us.

Listen to God’s parental words: ‘Can a mother forget the infant at her breast, walk away from the baby she bore? But even if mothers forget, I’d never forget you—never.’ Isaiah 49:15 MSG

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, …how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.
Matthew 23:37 NIV

I will extend peace… you will nurse and be carried on her arm and dandled on her knees. As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; and you will be comforted over Jerusalem. Isaiah 66:12-13 NIV

The grace-full tenderness that we have received so generously from God, the maternal Father, we must share by praying for those around us, and by reflecting (in God’s image!) our Parent’s compassion to troubled friends or co-workers. Then, to complete the circle, we return that love to God with heartfelt gratitude and joy.

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