A good, good Father
In the first of our Micah life stories we catch up with Nana, a Micah member who has been attending our online services.
We recently celebrated fathers and all that they are to us and all that they've done for us (20 June 2021). Fatherhood is a great privilege and a huge responsibility, and fathers are often the unsung heroes in our lives and in society. They reflect the role of God as the Father of creation.
But what about those who, for whatever reason, may not have experienced the love, protection and care of their physical father? We spoke to Micah member Nana about her journey towards embracing God as her heavenly Father.
Q: What was your relationship with your father like growing up?
My father was vaguely present in my life. When I was four years old he and my mother separated. After the separation, it seemed like an uphill battle of trying to see him as he never wanted to have a relationship with me. When I did manage to see him, it was on very few occasions.
Q: Did that have a significant impact on your life as a young woman in terms of the way you viewed life?
I would say yes, unconsciously it has impacted my life. Seeing my mum work so hard as a single mum made me very independent and self-reliant.
Q: How did you become a Christian, and how did you respond to God as your Father?
I would say that because I have always gone to church with my mum I knew of God but didn’t know him. I would see my mum praying to God asking Him for His protection and His provision, and always seeing what seemed impossible become possible. My mum and her faith in God were my first touchpoint in knowing God.
As a Sunday tradition my siblings and I would all have to put on our Sunday best and be on time for church. Unbeknown to me this was the beginning of the seed being planted and taking root in my heart.
I decided to give my life to Christ at the age of 12. At the time I don’t think I knew what it really meant, but I was blessed enough to have a strong network of people and pastoral care to guide me and teach me about the love of God.
Then, at the age of 15 I became pregnant. I experienced first-hand, the unconditional love of God. It was my faith that brought me through what I went through during that time. Even though I had found myself in such a situation, I still felt God’s love encompass me. I felt His protection. It was at this time in my life that I began to have a personal relationship with God and to see Him as my Heavenly Father.
Q: What was it about seeing God as your heavenly Father that got you through that difficult time?
His unfailing love. When I began to seek God for myself and have a personal relationship with Him everything changed. I began to know God for who He is; knowing that His love is unconditional and that he first loved me before I loved Him. I began to understand that I did not have to do anything for Him to love me. Regardless of where I found myself, He still wanted me with all my flaws and mistakes - and for me that was everything. The feelings of shame and guilt I felt were replaced with His love and acceptance.
Q: How has coming to see God as your Father impacted your life, and relationship with your earthly father?
Having God as my Heavenly Father has impacted every area of my life. As in any child and parent relationship, the child always wants to make their parents proud. For me, that is what I am trying to do daily - seeking His direction and involving Him in every area of my life.
In regard to my relationship with my biological father, God has begun a work in me and in my heart to help me to forgive him for his shortcomings.
Q: Some Christians find it difficult to see God as their Father because of their past experiences of fatherhood. What one piece of advice would you like to give to someone who is struggling to see God as their Father?
One of my many favourite scriptures in the Bible is Jeremiah 1:5:
“ I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.”
This scripture is so powerful to me as it shows that God has always had a plan for each and every one of us.
My advice to anyone who is struggling is to meditate on this scripture:
“God is not a man so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through?”
- Numbers 23:19
Whatever situation or circumstance you are in, bring it to God. Trust Him. He sees and hears you. He will show up and He will not let you down.
Check out our YouTube channel to see tributes in honour of some of our Micah fathers. If you would like to know more about how you can experience God as your Father email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.