The father stood in the middle of the living room, surveying the damage his daughter had done.

 

The Father stood, looking down on His creation, seeing the damage His children had done.

 

The father looked at the torn pages of books, the overturned plants, the scattered DVD’s, and was angry. After all the toys he’d given her, and still…

 

The Father saw the sin, the hatred, the glorifying of their immorality, scattered across the Earth, and was angry. He provided them with every good thing, and still…

 

How many times had he warned her, how many “no no’s?” How many time-outs? How many times had he rearranged the furniture, reinforced the playpen, and cleaned up the messes?

 

How many times had He warned them? How many times had He repeated the law, how many prophets had He sent? How many times had be allowed them to be taken into bondage and then freed them when they repented?

 

The father picked up his daughter from the middle of the mess. She resisted, struggling and crying “No, No, No” as she tried to escape the consequences.

 

The Father took up His children. They resisted, struggling and crying, “No, No, No” as they tried to escape their consequences.

 

Anger faded, replaced by sadness and resolve. The father knew what he had to do, but knowing didn’t make it any easier. Would she understand? Would she obey? He didn’t want to do this.

 

Anger faded, replaced by sadness, His resolve unchanged. The Father knew what he had to do, but knowing didn’t make it any easier. Would they understand? Would they obey? He didn’t want to do this.

 

The father raised his hand…

 

The Father raised His hand…

 

The child wept and looked at him as if to say, “If you loved me, you wouldn’t punish me.” It nearly broke his heart.

 

The children wept and cried out, “If you loved us, you wouldn’t punish us!” It nearly broke His heart.

 

Because he loved her, the father brought his hand down, solid but tempered. The pain in his heart, so much greater than the pain on her bottom.

 

Because He loved them, The Father brought his hand down, solid but tempered. The pain in His heart, so much greater than the pain in their lives.

 

The father sat in his office, knowing he had done the right thing, but his resolve didn’t lessen the pain in his heart. He loved her so much. Loved to teach her, and play with her, and laugh with her. If that was all there was to it, life would be perfect.

 

The Father sat on His throne in Heaven. That He was right and just and holy, didn’t lessen the pain in his heart. He loved them so much. Loved to teach them, to share in their joy and laughter. When that was all there was to it, life would be perfect.

 

But, he knew she would never be truly happy, truly safe, until she learned to obey.

 

But, He knew they would never be truly happy, truly safe, until they learned to obey.

 

How many “No no’s,” and time-outs, and swats?

 

How many prophets, and promises, and punishments?

 

The father wept.

 

The Father wept.

 

XXX

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