He is our Father, forever: God never stops caring for us
For the past two weeks I have watched a dove settle into a nest in my garden. Then I saw a broken eggshell, so there was at least one little baby to take care of. I managed a peek into the nest and saw two little ones, which is normal for these birds. I watched them grow and soon the nest was becoming a bit crowded. I figured that they would be out by the end of this week. What do you know? This morning, the nest is empty, one youngster is sitting on the fence and the other one is nowhere to be seen. Both are now independent, and the mother is off looking for a new partner.
Unlike the mother dove, God as a parent never stops caring for you. It does not matter what age you are or what your situation is. If you doubt this, His Word puts you at ease:
5Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. – Hebrews 13:5
The writer quotes from Joshua 1:5:
5There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. – Joshua 1:5
I want to focus on the middle part of Hebrews 13:5 which deals with acceptance of who we are and what we have. We often look around at others and what they are or what they have. What we probably do not see are the things that are burdens in their lives. The very same person you admire who is super fit, looks fantastic in whatever they wear, and drives a fancy car, may have high blood pressure, heart disease, or some hurt they carry that we cannot see.
Just as God tells Joshua, that He will be with him as He was with Moses, so it is with our lives. The mother dove looked after her little ones for a short time and then left. Now they must fend for themselves. This is not how our Father deals with us. He will not let us down in any circumstance, at any time.
There are three words in the text that we should look at more closely: fail/leave, forsake, and thee. The word “fail/leave” in Greek is ἀνίημι (aniémi) which means to let go of, to loosen, or desist. The writer of Hebrews translates “fail” with “leave”. The word “forsake” in Greek is ἐγκαταλείπω (egkataleipó) which means to desert or leave behind. While the mother dove does both, our Father does neither. Finally, God makes this promise personal when He says “thee” – not you as in unspecified singular or plural, but personal – you, me, I, us.
To never fail/leave or forsake us, God the Father did exactly that, but not to us. On the cross, Jesus uttered these words:
34And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? – Mark 15:34, Psalm 22:1
Jesus was made to be sin for our sake (1 John 2:2; Romans 5:8) so that God the Father would never have to desert us, no matter what we did. If you have ever wondered how the Old Testament and New Testament are connected, here you have the proof. God told Joshua He would never let him down (Joshua 1:5), Jesus was the one who became the forsaken one (Mark 15:34; Psalm 22:1), and the writer of Hebrews confirms it (Hebrews 13:5).
I cannot explain it any better than the Author of the Bible can, and I will leave you with the following chapter from Isaiah. Read it carefully and you will understand God’s purpose and protection in your life:
1Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed? 2For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. 3He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.4Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 5But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 7He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. 8He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. 9And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. 10Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. 11He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. 12Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors. – Isaiah 53:1-12
I do not know what struggles you are facing today. Maybe, like the little doves, you had to leave the safety of your surroundings and find yourself out in the open. Maybe there is nobody to take care of you – the mother dove has left the nest as well, going her own way. Maybe you are facing a crisis that you think nobody else knows about. Know that there is someone who does – our Father knows everything and is intimately involved in your situation.
My prayer for you today is that you will take comfort in the fact that God loves you and cares for you. He has already demonstrated through John 3:16 that he loved the world. If you are part of His fold, know that He is interested in you and what you are going through. He will not let go of you or desert you. Just trust Him to supply in your needs. If you have not done so yet, ask Him now. He knows it anyway. He is your caring and loving Father, forever.