I was playing with my baby daughter yesterday. As we played, I wondered if she knew I was her father yet. This thought actually moved me to another: What is a father?
I concluded that a father, from a simple biological perspective, is a creator. I actually created my child, she is my DNA, my image, for she was made completely through me (of course, I include my wife in the ‘me’, we are one after all)
This made me realise why I have this outrageous love for my daughter, a profoundly deeper love than anything I’ve ever felt. Because, my daughter is my creation. I am her creator.
Now, I’m an artist, so I do create lots of things. But these things are an expression of my thoughts and ideas. And as my thoughts move onto new things, so does my attention to those previous creations. But my daughter is different, because she is a living creation!
What an artwork she is too, a masterpiece! My greatest work ever! My claim to artistic greatness! A perfect, unique, and ever-growing masterpiece!
Yes, as you can tell, I’m a proud creator.
My other works of art range from amateurish to fairly good. A few are up there on a professional level. But none of them – I mean NONE – could even be compared to my greatest creation. My child. WOW – she takes my breath away. She’s brings me to tears of joy. She is always in my thoughts. She is my everything.
So, back to my daughter, does she know I’m her father? I don’t think so, for the term ‘father’ and its meaning have to be learned anyway. But what does she think of me? Does she know I’m her creator? No, I don’t think she realises that either. So then what? Who am I to my daughter?
At the moment, I’m the big friendly giant. I’m the person she knows is always there. The one who will feed her, cloth her, wash her, play with her. I’m the big friendly giant who she can tell really, really likes her. One day she’ll figure out I don’t just like her, but I love her, and that my love surpasses anything else I could ever love.
One day she’ll know I created her and that she was in my thoughts every moment from the time she was just a tiny dot in mummy’s womb.
One day she’ll realise the depths of my love for her. But for now, she’s really enjoying the big silly giant who cleans up after her and makes funny faces for her amusement.
Our Heavenly Father
I think this is really what it is like for our heavenly Father. He has created a lot of things, a whole-universe-kind-of-A-Lot, but mankind, we have been made in his image, from his DNA – his love for us is abundant, radical, and incomparable. He thinks of us as his masterpiece, his perfect work, his greatest achievement.
And what do we think of him? Well that depends, it’s somewhere between the big giant in the sky and the deeply loving Father.
Where ever we are on the journey, I believe God is fine with it. Just like I’m fine with my daughter thinking I’m the big giant who cleans up after her, because I know one day, she’ll know me so much more.
Just like our relationship with God, our heavenly Father, it’s a journey. No matter where we are on that journey, our Father’s love for us is no different. It’s always at maximum. He’s always in awe of us. One day, we’ll all mature, just like every baby matures, and we’ll see God in the fullness of who he is. Our Father who loves us more than his own life. Our Father who thinks we are his great creation, his crowning achievement. Our Daddy, who loves us completely.