Focal Passages: Psalm 103:2-6, 8-13, 17-18
It was a beautiful sunny day that summer. We were on vacation, and I was splashing in the hotel pool when my foot slipped down the slope going to the deep end. Moments earlier I had clear instructions from my dad to stay in the shallow end of the pool since I could not swim. I remember it like it was yesterday.
One minute I was having the time of my life; the next minute I was struggling to stay alive. Panic set in as I floundered underneath the water, and then I saw the most beautiful site. It was my father, fully dressed, wallet and all, swimming toward me with his arms opened wide. He grabbed me and took me to safety.
When I think about the many times my dad has been there for me I’m reminded of my heavenly Father. Throughout my life, the Lord has extended compassion to me on a regular basis. Like David in Psalm 103, I have been the undeserving recipient of God’s unceasing love.
Sometimes our understanding of God’s nature can be distorted because we had a poor example of an earthly father.
Scripture can help us correct our view of God as Father. In the previous lesson we saw Yahweh who stands supreme as covenant Lord. In Psalm 103:1-22, we see Yahweh as a loving Father. Although the comparison of God to a father does not occur until later in the Psalm, David speaks of God as One who forgives our sin, redeems our life from the pit, is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and always faithful. All of these characteristics reflect a correct picture of a compassionate and loving Father.
How do we respond to such a Father? If we are wise we will keep His covenant and obey His commands (103:17-18). Our heavenly Father has our best interest in mind. Living life in rebellion is foolish. It’s like keeping your foot on the edge of the deep end of the pool when you can’t swim. Trust me; it’s a risk you do not want to take.