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Laughing with My Father

Greetings friends and family! “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and Lord Jesus Christ.” (2Corinthians 1:2)

I know in my previous blog I mentioned how I was struggling with being homesick, but it was cool to see how God was working through it. Just because I could see God working through my struggles did not mean the feelings left me. My emotions have been up and down and all around, so it has been up to God and I to try to figure this whole monkey business out. Then I stumbled across this verse this morning;

2 Corinthians 1:9,
“Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.”

The death part is an exaggeration on my part. I never felt like I was going to die here in Swaziland. We have been so heavily blessed here! We have indoor plumbing (with real toilets!), indoor showers that are cold, but that it feels great after a long day in the sun, we each have a bed and plenty of food, the people are so kind and full of joy. However, I found myself simply struggling to enjoy all that He provided for us.

The last part of the verse is the truth that spoke to me. “…rely not on ourselves but on God…” So often at home I run to my parents or my boyfriend to help me wrestle through my problems. It works for a time, but the issue always arises back to the surface at some point. Here, in Swaziland, I do not have the luxury of being in contact with my loved ones except once a week. That means 6 out of the 7 days, I have to deal with my own issues. At first I tried handling them on my own, but I believe that is why I was so darn homesick. I’m learning to no longer rely on myself, but on my Father in Heaven, who has always been there and will always be there whenever I need Him.

God has also let me experience a beautiful picture of His love for me.

I was at my Care Point playing with little kids (as normal), and I knelt down to look straight into this little boys face. I saw my reflection in his eyes and this little boy and I were giggling just to giggle with one another. God then filled me with this thought; that is how He approaches and looks at us. He kneels down so He can look us in the eye. He does not look over us like a prideful king, He humbly gets on our level to look into our eyes. And when He looks into our eyes, He sees Himself in us. When I saw my reflection in that child, God sees a reflection of His attributes in His beloved sons and daughters. Not only that, but He takes absolute delight when we look right back at Him. He adores when we take time to be silly and fun with Him. Yes, He is a Father who deserves and expects respect, but He wants to be able to giggle with us, simply for the sake of giggling. He wants to experience that joy with us.

Think about some of your favorite memories with your dad. Usually it does not include coming before him, head down, confessing something we have done wrong, making him disappointed in his little girl or little boy. No, the best memories come from when he chased you around the house until he caught you, scooped you up, and you nearly died of laughter. Maybe the time you went blueberry picking and chucked rotten blueberries at one another and became a fruity mess. Or when he tells you those stupid dad jokes and laughs at your silly bathroom jokes.

Our Heavenly Father is like this father. There are times He will be disappointed in us, or He will have to discipline us. That is what a good father does, but He also wants to have fun with us. He wants for us to enjoy His company.

Zephaniah? ?3:17?
“The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.”

So there is how God has been working on my life this past week. Praise be to Him that I have an earthly papa who shows me a sliver of what my Heavenly Father is like. Also, praises for how He has been moving and changing me and the 17 other ladies I’ve been living with. All Glory to our loving Dad.

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