Being raised in church, for me, did not equal an automatic relationship with God as a whole. Walking into the throne room in prayer before the Father was not something I understood and will probably not understand in its fullness until I am in His presence in Heaven. However, it is a place that Jesus has escorted me into many times in my life. When I thought of Father God, many feelings began to rise up in me. I knew when I started my marriage study I would need to enter His presence daily and that felt almost impossible to imagine because of the shame I wore like a garment. However, with Jesus, I found where I belonged, right in my Daddy God's arms.
Daddy God is a description I like to use to help me understand His love for us.
I want to walk you through scripture because, I can tell you about my life long building relationship experience or you can experience Him yourself through His Word. First, let's talk about Jesus, our friend. He's going to introduce us to His Father. Jesus has so much love and honor for Him, we can't help but want to know His Daddy too.
...You are my Son; today I have become your Father. -Psalm 2:7
He will call out to me, 'You are my Father, my God, the Rock my Savior - Psalm 89:26
I myself said, 'How gladly I treat you like sons and give you a desirable land, the most beautiful inheritance of any nation.' I though you would call me Father' and not turn away from following me. - Jeremiah 3:19
Have we not all one Father? Did not one God create us?... - Malachi 2:10
Jesus said... In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. - Matthew 5:16
Jesus said... Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? -Matthew 6:26
Jesus said... No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. - Matthew 11:27
Scripture overload? Maybe. I encourage you to prayerfully read them again. God's Word is full of scriptures that point to His undying love for us. He created us with a purpose, one that He intends to see finish to a flourishing end. How can we know Jesus, and not know Him? We can't; just as He said. However, we have to be willing to step before Him and ask for His provision, protection, and identity. We have to put our crowns on straight ladies and seek Him. Jesus stands at the door waiting to introduce us.
When I was in college, I wasn't in church. I lived away from home for a bit and never plugged into a church local to me. However, one night I had a dream that I remember so vividly. I recall being in a room so very bright it wasn't even white, it was brighter than white. My eyes couldn't see but when I tried to look up, I saw the hands and feet of Jesus. It was assurance that Jesus was there, right in the throne room, waiting on me. It's been nearly 20 years since that night and I remember it like it was yesterday. No, I couldn't see the Father but I sensed His presence. I knew He was greater in that room and I knew that He was waiting on me.
For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. - Matthew 6:14
Sometimes it's difficult to believe God's truth. They seem so out of reach, like the one above. When I began praying for my marriage it became clear that my prayers for forgiveness were working to release healing in my marriage and relationship with my husband. I needed more forgiveness for my behavior than I needed to forgive my husband for his. I'm going to share with you an embarrassing moment that I'm ashamed of.
My husband worked 6 long, hard years for a company near us. He was never home, always tired, and I craved time with him. I resented the job but knew it was our provision. I would drive myself and our little boys up quite often to try to have lunch with him. He was always under pressure to perform and meet quotas. I only added to that pressure. One day, I picked him up for a lunch break, drove him to grab some fast food with plans to eat in his break room and on the way back with our lunch sacks and kids in the back an argument broke out. I cannot remember what the argument was over, clearly it wasn't that important. Anger rose up in me something fierce like it often did. My not so proudest moment in my marriage was when I reached into the sack as he was getting out of the car and threw his hamburger at him. It hit the ground and as I drove away I watched in my rear view mirror as he knelt down and picked it up. He kneeled down and I'm sure he was furious. I'm sure he was upset about his lunch but mostly, I watched my husband break. He kneeled down to pick up scraps of food, all dignity lost, all honor gone, all the things I needed my husband to be, stripped away.
I had a decision to make as I drove my boys home. They were upset they didn't get to eat lunch with their Daddy, I was upset over words. Words. He's never called me names, he's never belittled me, he has never disrespected me with words. I was simply looking for any excuse to make him miserable, because I was miserable. It wasn't long after that, that I realized I had to do something different. I couldn't keep focusing on making him as miserable as myself. I had to start focusing on how I could be a better me, I was quite sick of the wife I had become. I didn't want to be known as the wife who threw hamburgers at her husband.
"...If God is for us, who can be against us?" - Romans 8:31
Can you think of a time when you dishonored your husband in such a way that it made him less of a man to the world? Maybe not. Maybe you've never done such a thing. However, it's more common than we'd like to admit. What I found is that I needed to forgive, to be forgiven, and to go back to God's plan for our marriage. Boy, did I have so much to learn.
He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all - how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things. - Romans 8:32
That being forgiveness. That being the marriage He intended for us.
Approach the throne of Grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. - Hebrew 4:16
We can enter the throne room of God with no fear of punishment. We can enter His presence to ask for help. Most importantly, we can enter His presence to be reminded of who we are to Him, that includes our husbands. Who is your husband to God? Do you think that God sees the man your husband can be and expects you to help him become that great man of God in this broken world? Do you think that your role is of utmost important to God? He gave us the tools. He gave us His Son. He gave us a crown to remind us that we are His in a world that is looking for hope.
My marriage, ladies, is one that I am proud of. There are plenty of "hamburger moments" to be ashamed up but that's the beauty of what God can do. With His mercies that are new every day, we can leap up off of His mercy like a spring board every morning. We can throw on our armor and walk with Jesus straight to the Father. The door swings wide for His children. So, when I approach our Heavenly Father, I have found that He listens like I need a Daddy to listen. He loves like I need a Daddy to love. He provides like I need a Daddy to provide. He reminds me that He is my Daddy God.
He changes me little by little to become the mighty woman of God He needs me to be along side the husband that He created me to lift up, honor, respect, and pray for. He does the same for each of us, if we will just hold Jesus by the hand and enter the throne room.
Father, I come to you today to ask for forgiveness. I have sinned against my husband. I have dishonored the man You so carefully made and created. I have dishonored You in doing so. I need Your help, Daddy God. I am Your child and I have so much I need, You alone can meet every single one. Show me how I can be a better wife, show me how I can lift my husband up. Show me what honor for my husband can do for him and for our marriage. I thank you Lord for Your grace and mercy. Teach me, help me to be the wife you are calling me to be. Help me to see the little changes and blessings in my marriage as they move us closer to You. Give me a vision of our future together the way You see it. I desire to know Your heart. I claim the promises that You have given. I reject all lies that have been cast over our marriage like a net. Daddy God, I ask that you release our marriage from the expectations of the world where failure is common and quitting is an option. In your Majesty, show me Your expectations and how majestic they are. Create in us a desire to know You first. Help my husband and I to walk in Your glory, hand in hand, to honor You. In Your Beloved Sons name, Amen.
I am married to my high school sweetheart. We've been pressing ahead together for over 24 years. We have 5 beautiful children; 3 by my own body and 2 through foster to adopt. I wrote this Bible study in 2009, years ago, for myself and shared it on my blog. It is very dear to my heart. It's been tweaked and edited many times and I'm proud to be bringing it back to you. Over the years I received countless emails from women who credited this study with changing their marriage for the better. Since removing it from my old blog I have received just as many emails asking when it would return. I hope you enjoy spending your time in God's Word with me.