When I was a very little girl, I naively thought that once you learned how to be an adult and had some practice at it, you would be prepared for life.
In other words, I thought that you would know what to do in just about every situation. So, by the time you reached the ripe old age of 30, you would have all of the answers, and you would be in control of your life.
Did that make you chuckle? It wasn’t long before I began to realize that no matter how old you live to be, you will still face challenges: perplexing problems that require solutions, obstacles that must be overcome, physical or emotional pain that must be dealt with (or, in some cases, accepted) and relationships that need to be redefined, mended, nourished or put on hold.
Sometimes I have felt like the student who, while taking a difficult exam, discovers to his horror that all the answers to the test were given on the one day that he was absent from class. But no amount of instruction prepares you for every difficult situation. Eventually, we all face circumstances that we don’t feel capable of managing on our own.
Since God knows the end from the beginning, He could have preprogrammed each of us with all the answers that we would need for every situation we would face.
Then we could always feel in control of our lives, and we would never have to “bother Him” with our problems. But that was not His plan.
Instead, He wanted to have a very personal, growing relationship with each of us individually. For that to be a reality, He knew that we would have to live in dependence on Him. When we realize that we need His help, His guidance, His strength and His presence–when we need Him–then He delights in showing himself strong in our behalf. When we go through difficulties He wants not only to help us through them, but also to share himself with us.
The Bible uses human relationships to describe our relationship with God.
He is a friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24). Even if a mother could forget her nursing baby and have no compassion on her child, He would never forget us (Isaiah :15). “As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him” (Psalm 103:13, NIV).
However, human relationships cannot adequately describe the relationship He wants to have with us. As imperfect human beings, our love and our abilities have limits. But God’s love is endless, and His abilities are infinite.
He never has a bad day, and He never overreacts to anything. He is never too tired to listen to us. When we are at a loss to explain our situation or how we are feeling, He already knows it completely. We don’t have to make an appointment to speak to Him, and He doesn’t put us on hold in the middle of our conversation with Him. He is all-powerful and always present.
Even though our relationship with Him transcends our life on earth and will last for all eternity, we will never fully know or understand Him because He is so far beyond our comprehension. But one thing is certain: No one will ever love us as much as He does. He proved that on the cross when He took our place.