Many of us have experienced the hurt of an earthly father. The kind of hurt that leaves us with scars, wounds, and confusion about who we truly are, and ultimately, who God really is.
I was someone who carried the burden of not being fully known by my dad and I bore that pain for as long as I could remember. Even calling him "dad" seemed weird to me. He was never around, he never even checked up on me, and it never really seemed like he cared all that much about my life. So of course, once I got saved and began praying, calling God, "Father", really made me uncomfortable.
I had to commit to going on this journey, a journey that I am still on today, of relearning what a real parent is and understanding God's core characteristics.
God is not my earthly father. He did not lie to me my whole life, leave me stranded, and withhold affection from me. He's actually done the opposite. He has lead me to this point in my life, in truth, has never left my side, and showers me with His grace.
Though my head knows that is the reality, it is still sometimes so hard to convince my heart of that truth.
If you are on this journey of knowing God better, you know that Satan likes to confuse us and convince us that the flaws of our fathers are reflected in the character of God. Then we are there believing that God is just a bigger, more powerful version, of our earthly father. And if your dad was anything like mine, this could be doing some real damage to your relationship with God. It is important for us to understand who God is, so that we can experience all of the joys that come with being loved by Him.
When I realized that there were many flaws in the way that I viewed God, I then understood that for a long time that I had been loving God from a distance.
I could never let Him get too close. I didn't want Him to see all the broken parts of me, because I was scared He'd give up on me too. I was nervous to ever confess my sins to Him, because I was nervous that He'd just put me in a penalty box. I was terrified of really getting intimate with God, though if I had, I would have had no more hesitations or doubts towards Him.
I began reading one Psalm every day and memorizing verses that spoke about God's character. Just a few days into this process, I learned that God's character is infinite, and my finite mind couldn't fully grasp who He was, even if it wanted to. Knowing Him and His character is a continuous lifelong operation.
I don't want to have my view of God skewed any longer. During my study, I've been able to understand God's character in five aspects, and hopefully this will help you have a better understanding of Him too. Let these five aspects encourage you. Let them strengthen your faith. Let them put grace into perspective for you. And though these characteristics only scratch the surface of who God is, I hope that they help you to feel like you can break some of the walls that have been around your heart. You are so safe with Him.
God Is Holy
1 Samuel 2:2
“There is none holy like the Lord; there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God”
Now, depending upon the way that you grew up, we may have different definitions on what holiness means. So to clear things up... Holiness means to be separated in perfection.
God is separate from us in the fact that He is purely good and exceedingly powerful. There is not even a trace of evil in Him. Unlike humans, who are sinful and not purely good in of ourselves, God does not need a savior, because He is not sinful. Because He is Holy, He cannot be in community or relationship with evil, this is why He sent Jesus to die for our sins. This way, we could be made perfect and holy through Christ and be able to have a relationship with God.
God’s Holiness is the reason that there is some goodness in this world. He is the standard of morality and His character is pure. Friends, He couldn't share in those defects of our earthly dads, because it's not possible. It goes against His word and everything that He is. He is literally unable to look at sin, and He is uniquely perfect. No one in heaven or on earth is like the Holy God of Scripture.
God Is Sovereign
Psalm 103: 19
“The Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all.”
If you were to look up the word “sovereign” in the dictionary, you would find words like “superior,” “greatest,” “supreme in power”, and "ruler" in its definition. But the way I like to explain God’s sovereignty best is simply to say, “God is in control.”
He is the King of the universe. Sometimes throughout life, it can be easy to forget this part of His character. When we become too worried about the mundane tasks of our every day. When we are distracted by the temporary things on this world. It's difficult to swallow this truth especially when hard things occur in life. But His sovereignty should provide us with an abundant amount of comfort. Because He is in control and He loves you, nothing will ever come into your life that He did not decree or allow. No matter what you face in life, you can know that you have someone that's got your back forever.
You may have not had the best family, but God had a plan through it all. You may have had your heart broken, but God knew what was to come. You may have felt lost, but He held you even closer through those times. He is a sovereign God, which means that we can trust Him entirely.
God Is Three In One
2 Corinthians 13:14
“May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”
There is so much that could be said about God as the trinity. This is a concept that has been studied out and dissected for centuries. However, the basic concept of the trinity is that God is one person but made up of three distinct persons. There is God the father, Jesus the son, and the Holy Spirit. All three aspects of God share in His characteristics but they all show up differently and participate in different roles. They work together as one and for the same purpose. They are united in their efforts and they are complete in their community with one another. This is why God does not “need” anyone else. He already has connection within Himself. However, He chose to create us because He wanted to have community with us!
Isn’t that so cool? God didn’t need us but he wanted us.
God Is Love
1 John 4:7-9
"Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him."
God does not only give love. He is the source of love. As the Creator of all things, He is the one who created love. It is because of His love that we are able to love. The fullest expression of God as love was through the Son, Jesus Christ. God created us, sustains us, and has revealed Himself to us through Jesus.
God doesn't force Himself on anyone. God is kind. God does not show partiality. God is not jealous. Love is a core aspect of God’s character. This should change the game for those of us who aren't close with a parent. It changed the game for me. After I began walking in this new identity of being loved, and fully HIS, I created this necklace in my Sought After Shop. Click the image below to check it out!
If you're anything like me, you craved genuine love from them, yet they could never give you what they didn't have themselves. What we wish so badly to have, can be directly found in God. Once we come face to face with God, through Jesus Christ, we are able to experience the outpouring of His incredible love.
God Is Faithful
2 Timothy 2:13
“If we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself.”
God is way more faithful than we ever could be. He never leaves us, even when we act in ways that seem unlovable. He is a God that is always there, always present, always open and ready to have a conversation. He isn’t inaccessible or too busy. If there is ever a time that we feel alone and abandoned by God, it has something to do with what we are doing, not a lack of presence or love from God. Maybe you have experienced neglect in the past and that makes you afraid to trust God and His faithfulness to you. I get that it can be hard to separate what you have experienced in others from who God is, but you can be confident that God will always be faithful to you. Just like 2 Timothy 2:13 says, even when you are faithless, He is faithful. He is the most dedicated and present Father that there ever was or ever will be.
Chant this until your soul believes it: The character of your earthly father is not the character of your heavenly Father.
God loves you, He is holy, sovereign, communal, full of love, and faithful.
Check out another blog post below: God Is Not Like Your Earthly Father: 5 Truths You Need To Hear
Here is an incredible song that I always listen to in order to be reminded of how good God is. KIND BY AMANDA COOK