“A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing...” Psalm 68:5-6a
“I want to be their father.” The Lord spoke these words to my heart this morning. “I want them to know me. Instead, they run from me, reject me.”
I feel the longing in God’s heart for his children. He grieves for his lost ones.
“They are searching for me, but they can’t find me. They are looking for me in the wrong places.” They are looking for love in all the wrong places, as the song goes.
Our Father's Heart
Our children, our spouses, our loved ones who are lost, rebellious, or addicted are looking for love and for God everywhere but where they should. They run to alcohol, drugs, money, careers, power, and so many other life controlling strongholds, fleeing the very freedom they should cling to.
They are wanderers in search of something they cannot find, trying to outrun the One they need to find.
Wisely, God let’s his children wander until they (we) figure out that we are going in the wrong direction, until we realize that nothing and no one fills that void but him.
Our wanderings away from God always lead us back to Him. No man can escape the day when they will stand before their Maker and have to make a choice. “Choose this day whom you will serve.”
Until then, sin and rebellion are allowed to take their natural course. Following after our own desires always leads us to bondage and separation from God. We become prisoners to the very things we thought would set us free.
If your loved one is running from God right now, their sin may have them imprisoned. For some, their bodies and brains are broken and sick. They are out there alone. And you feel alone in your worry, in your dread. Don’t stay there. There is hope.
This verse tells us the lengths God will go to for the lost and lonely. Seated in his holy dwelling, he is a father to the fatherless. We are not alone. We are not orphans. Our loved ones have a father, even if that have yet to recognize him. His name is Jesus.
For that single mom trying to do this on your own, for the wife whose husband has decided this is all too much and found comfort instead in the arms of another, and for the widow who lost her husband too soon, God is your defender.
Some bible versions translate "defender" as "protector" or "champion". God is fighting for you and for your dear ones. You are not alone in this battle. You are defended and protected by your Champion, your personal bodyguard, who wages war against your enemy.
He set the prisoners free. No earthly chains of sin, addiction, or mental illness can hold them. Rebellion is conquered. When God sets them free, they are set free once and for all.
Jesus chose to leave his heavenly dwelling many years ago to restore us to himself. He understands loneliness. He felt pain. He suffered beyond our imagination. He did it because he wants our companionship. He broke the chains that bound us and opened the prison doors.
Our Father's Freedom
Sin blinds us to that truth. Whether we can see it or not, or whether we believe it or not, doesn't change that truth. He did everything necessary to pay the price for our freedom.
"So if the Son sets your free, you will be free indeed." John 8:36
We are free. We have only to rejoice and know he is our father, our defender, our hero. Our job is to choose to walk in that freedom.
For the one you have etched in your heart and consuming your thoughts, Jesus has set them free as well. It is finished. And His spirit can cut through the cloudiness in their minds that sin or drugs or mental illness has created.
Keep praying. Never lose hope. When he opens their prison doors, there will be no force powerful enough to keep them bound! And on that day, there will be singing and rejoicing in heaven as one more of his lost ones comes home.