I spent many years in the church. I knew of the holiness of God. I was taught early on to reverence Him for He is holy. It is an vital part of His character. I had respect and awe for God, but what I didn't have was an intimate relationship. I knew Him as God, the Father, the all sufficient, all holy God of the universe. I knew I could approach His throne, yet I struggled to feel "at home" in His embrace.
As He began to change my heart and show me how to enter into His embrace I knew I needed a name for Him that brought intimacy to me. Father was too impersonal and strict for me.
Daddy was what I called my earthly dad. God seemed like a title. I needed something that was personal and intimate, something that spoke of relationship. I wanted to bridge the gap in my mind of knowing God as Holy, yet wanting to see Him as swallowing me in His embrace. I struggled to see myself up in His lap, engulfed in His arms. So I went to Him and asked Him what I could call Him.
One of my all time favorite movies is "A Little Princess". What I love about that movie is how deeply she was loved by her father. There is a particular scene in the movie that speaks to me. Her father is leaving for war. He has provided a beautiful room for her to stay in while he's gone. Her favorite things are brought in and placed throughout. He has even bought her a special doll that he tells her to hold onto and hug until he returns. Everything she would need is there in that room. She runs, jumps up in his lap, a smile on her face, a twinkle in her eyes as she listens to her father tell her what to do when she feels afraid. She takes his face in her hands and turns it towards her and says, "It's OK, Papa, I'm going to be fine." She then begins to trace his face with her hands as she looks in his eyes. He says, "What are you doing, memorizing me by heart?" She says, "No, I already know you by heart."
What I love about that movie and that particular scene is that it gives my earthly eyes a picture of my spiritual reality. I am my "Papa's girl". I am invited up into His lap where He looks deeply into my eyes and tells me of His deep love. Immediately I knew this was the name I had been looking for. So I began to choose each time to call Him, "Papa." It has become my term of endearment.
Yes, I know in the deepest places that God is the Sovereign, Most Holy Creator of the universe. And because of His holiness that makes me holy, I am now able to rest in knowing Him as "My Papa".
Please know that when I use the word "Papa" it is out of the utmost reverence for my Abba.
When you read what I write and see Papa in there, think of it as a term of endearment, instead of a title. It is my affectionate name for the one who loves me more than my mind can completely understand. I invite you into my journey with Him, and our endearing times, because I want to
tell the world of my Papa and how deeply He loves....
Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, "Abba, Father. Galatians 4:6