“I guess I should not have let them play with matches, but I love them so much.”

“I love my children so I will let them play in the street.”

“I knew it would really be hot in the car, but they did not want to go into the store, and I really love them, so…”

Of course, these kinds of actions are not love. Parents quickly understand that love means saying no sometimes. It means setting boundaries. It does not mean letting your children do whatever they want. Parental love recognizes that you know what is best for your child. It is why vegetables get eaten, and dessert is not allowed to be the main course.

So many times people define love based on what they want. Teenagers tell their parents that if they really loved them they would let them go where they want, or spend whatever they want, or do what they are sure will make them happy. Good parents know that real love is making and enforcing decisions that are the best thing for the physical, emotional, and mental health of their children even when it is not what the child thinks they want.

If we understand this concept of parental love, why do think it does not apply to our relationship with God? God is often called our Father. God loves us and his love is perfect. He not only wants what is best for us, but he absolutely knows what is best for us. And because He does love us, He is not governed by what we think is best for us or what we are sure is the best thing for our life.

After all, if babies really knew what was best for them, they would not need a parent. And if we really knew what was best for us, we would not need a God.

Trust the One who will extend perfect love to you.
Most of us have figured out that we do not always know what is good for us. But God does know what is best for you. He is the Father that loves you, and He invites you into his family. He offers you the chance to be his son or his daughter. I can help you accept that invitation. Write to me at steve@hopeforlife.org or visit our HopeForLife.org website.

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