Monday, August 3, 2015

Like as a Father

by Alice Valdal

As a season's ticket holder, I've been enjoying the wealth of concerts offered at the Butchart Gardens this summer.  A warm evening, in a beautiful garden, watching the sun go down and listening to wonderful music is a balm to the soul. 
   It's also a great opportunity for people (and dog) watching.

Some things I've seen are just plain funny -- like the dog who howled along with the singer.  Or the string player trying to hold her music on the stand with her foot when the wind blew.
 But other's have touched my heart. I saw a child, frightened by a dragonfly, shrink up, small and tight, into her mother's embrace, totally trusting in her mother's love and protection. 
     I saw a father take off his jacket to wrap around his little girl, keeping her warm, while he shivered in shirt-sleeves.  

     I've seen parents quietly keeping watch while their children run and dance on the beckoning expanse of lawn.  There's just something about music and the evening and a big patch of grass!   Unaware that a parent stands guard, the children exult in their freedom, until someone takes a tumble.  There are tears and a rush to mom or dad for comfort and a kiss.  Then they are back to running and playing, healed and reassured. 

 The Bible abounds with images of God as a father.
Psalm 103:13 "like as a father pitieth his children"
 Psalm 68: 5-6
 Deuteronomy 32:10 
 Matthew 6:8 
 Matthew 18:14 

     God, the Father, goes to extraordinary lengths to draw close to His children, inviting them walk with Him in harmony and love.  My thanks to all the earthly parents who model the Heavenly Father and enrich my soul on a warm summer evening.

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