17 I was enraged by their sinful greed; I punished them, and hid my face in anger, yet they kept on in their willful ways. 18 I have seen their ways, but I will heal them; I will guide them and restore comfort to Israel’s mourners Isaiah 57:17-18
Beloved Brothers and Sisters,
Before being a father, I have never really understood the above verse. How can one person who has wronged you again and again and again be acceptable to you. Sometimes, such encounter could be worst if it is someone who is in your direct family or close to you. But after being a father, something inside of me changed. When I look into the eyes and face of my daughter, there is a deep connection in my spirit and soul to know that regardless of whatever she does, even at time really getting on my nerves and breaking the boundaries of my threshold of anger, she is still my daughter. She was created in my image and in many ways has my attributes. And I know that no parent can put before an excuse, reason of justification that when a child misbehaves or does something wrong, it has nothing to do with the parent. I still remember the late Derek Prince said in one of His powerful preaching that there are no delinquent children, but delinquent parent. This puts me in a position of great responsibility and accountability to ensure that I follow God’s word and obey His instructions as a father, a husband and a son, for I cannot tell my daughter to behave if I am not a good role model. Therefore our Senior Pastor always reminds us to build up our lives according to the Word of God. Our model is Jesus Christ, empowered by His Holy Spirit!
The Word of God is the only spiritual legacy, insurance and inheritance to ensure that our next generation becomes a witness of our encounter with God and likewise building up their experiences to pass it on to the next. When I understood as a father what all these verses reflect is the heart of our Father God in heaven, who gave His only Son, Jesus Christ to take our place and our sins. And when He looks at us, He sees the precious blood of Jesus and pardon our wrongs and forgets our sins. When I felt the father’s heart, my tears just uncontrollably roll down from my cheeks, knowing that whatever my daughter does, I can never separate from her and I will always have new mercies for her everyday for forgiveness and grace. I might hide my face for a few days, but I will always be ready to forgive her and attend to her needs with new guidance and to restore her with comfort and aspiration for the future that awaits her destiny in God.
The Word of God tells us that God is compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love and mercy. No one can measure how high, how deep, how long and how wide is His heart of mercy and grace. The deeper my wrongs, the deeper is His grace, the higher my piling of sins, the higher is His excavator of sins and rubbish accumulated in my life. I really didn’t know that I am a new creation every day. 2 Corinthians 5:17. The old has passed and the new has come. Instead of grieve, He crowns us with beauty, instead of ashes, He pours out oil of joy and instead of mourning, He clothes us with garment of praise.
Today we are seeing Israel strengthening their borders, and the people begin to plant new vines and plantations along the lines of enemies, telling them the goodness of God and Israel is a country redeemed by God with fruitfulness, prosperity and joy once again. Who is a God that does that? Our one and only most high God of Israel, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob!
To God be the Glory!
With Love Always,
Ps. Darien Choo