God’s love like that of father to child

By Joan Clayton

When our youngest son Lane and his wife came to see us when their daughters were small they sometimes went home at night. They dressed their little girls for bed, and after the goodbye hugs and kisses, they tucked them in their “car” bed and drove the two hours home.

My granddaughters went to sleep quickly. Once at home, their daddy took them in his big strong arms and tenderly put them in their own beds. The girls did not awaken until morning. When they awakened they found themselves at home and the first face they saw was that of their daddy, the object of their deep love.

Lane’s great love for his children reminds me of God’s great love for me.

The Bible tells us in Psalm 116:15, “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (NIV).

For the child of God, death is like going to sleep in the warmth and trust of God’s love. It is the security of God carrying you in his big strong arms while you are sleeping … carrying you to that wonderful place called “home.”

His face is the first face you will see when you awaken. You will feel safe and secure for you are the object of his incredible love.

The apostle Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:52 that we will all be changed …”in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.”

Verse 55 further states, “Where, O death is your sting?” (NIV) This verse reminds me of brilliant falling leaves of autumn and how beautiful they are before the dead of winter.

Spring will be here soon and I am even more mindful of the true meaning of the resurrection and God’s great sacrificial gift, his son Jesus.

Life’s journey is where we have been and where we are going.

Each day is precious here and each day is glorious where God is.

I am moved to pray this prayer. Maybe you will pray it too:

“Dear God,

Help me to live just for today. Yesterday is gone and tomorrow I cannot see. Let me be quick to express my love to others. May I memorize my husband’s face and may I never take his love for granted.

Guide me to find happiness in simple pleasures … the soft sound of snow crunching beneath my feet, the cooing of a dove, and the welcome dripping of rain against my window pane
Grant me time that I might minister your love to a lost and dark world.

Remove all pride and selfishness I pray. Hide me beneath your wings. Teach me to number my days and help me to make each moment count for time is fleeting.

When the midnight hour of my life has ended, I want to have run the race with patience and be found faithful. May I have fought a good fight and have kept the faith.

Grant that fear will be far from me and may I greet the dawn of glory breaking forth with singing and thanksgiving to you, O God.

I want to behold your beauty and spend my days in endless praise to you my king, my redeemer, my savior, my lord.

Thank you for the journey of life that leads to that ‘wonderful place called home.’ In that name above all names. His name is Jesus. Amen.”

Joan Clayton is a retired teacher, writer and religion columnist living in Portales. E-mail her at: