And by “through family” I mean through the experience of having children and to some extent by being a child. I can hardly begin to name or number the “aha!” moments when something going on between me and my children has caused me to stop and wonder if I am being taught a lesson. I have so come to believe that the family was intended to be God’s school of life, teaching us how he wanted us to view him in his role as father, teaching us how to grow strong, smart, productive and fulfilled as children.
So lately, I am alongside a few family members who are struggling with feeling significant, cared about and noticed. They are on my mind daily, sometimes hourly and sometimes for every minute of the hour. I want them to know I love them. I’m not a person who routinely stalks others or obsessively calls or texts (well, maybe a little too free with the texting…) but I do get desperate at times – wanting them to know how I value them for just being themselves. I love them. I want a word better than love to describe how I feel.
For these reasons, something in my reading today just leaped off the page for me. Here it is: “Love always wants to be known.” Have you felt the truth of this? It’s also true that I want to be loved but this is talking about the giving side of the equation, not the receiving. I somehow feel that if I could communicate love to someone, it would help them. They would not view their circumstances in the same way. They would not feel alone. They would have their “I AM LOVED” armor on and it would protect them.
And then I get it, suddenly, a richer, wider view of God. This is what he wants me to know, really know.
He loves me. That’s where my experience of him is supposed to start.
Okay, there is Jesus giving up a previous position, going through the human thing and dying for my sin. That’s big, but honestly, I sometimes have trouble relating to it. I sometimes miss the “why” behind it all.
He loves me and wants me to know it.
In his book “The Divine Conspiracy” Dallas Willard quotes another writer, Julian Norwich, “…for God wishes to be seen, and he wishes to be sought, and he wishes to be expected, and he wishes to be trusted.” In my frustrating, doubting times, I’ve wondered how I could become convinced of this. More often, I’ve wondered how I could convince others of this. I think I know how it’s happening with me. Again, Dallas Willard explains it in a way I totally understand.
“Persons rarely become present where they are not heartily wanted. Certainly that is true for you and me. We prefer to be wanted, warmly wanted, before we reveal our souls — or even come to a party. The ability to see and the practice of seeing God and God’s world comes through a process of seeking and growing in intimacy with him.”
I have to want God, want to be loved by him and to know him. And maybe that is the question for many. Who is God that I should want to know him? Is that your question?