Here is a chapter from the book I’m trying to complete.  I just want people, who have asked me, to know that I am actually working on it, albeit at a snail’s pace.

God has always desired you.

“For he chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight…”  Ephesians 1:4

The view from Gods trampoline

The view from God's trampoline

I love to lie with my children, on the trampoline in the dark of night, and look up at the stars.  They always seem hungry to understand planets and galaxies, space travel and concepts like the speed of light.  They want to hear about nebulae, comets and other stellar and interstellar events.  I’ve tried to explain that we are all made of the same material as stars.  We are part of this vast universe, connected by more than atoms.  We are intimately connected with the universe by association with the same Creator.  I hope my children can grasp what an amazing fact that is.  They are not random blobs, meaningless and pointless.  They are here intentionally, for a purpose, and meant to enjoy the stars, the trampoline and all the vast universe…forever!

At some point, the Creator who made all the immensity of the galaxies out of nothing also made us.  It wasn’t an accident.  He wasn’t mixing things in a puddle when suddenly Adam floated up.  I don’t see Him calling Gabriel over and saying, “Gabe, look at this.  What do you think it is?”  “Beats me Lord.  Let’s put it in a garden and see what happens.”

No, it was a purposeful act.  Mounting scientific research in cosmology even suggests that we are not random accidents; the odds against randomness are insurmountable.  God took his creative power and coupled it with a desire; a desire for us.  He made us in His image.  He wanted to create a thinking, living being like Himself.  Of course, everything created reflects something of God, but we were special. He wanted to have people with personality and choice; creations who could decide to love Him and whom He could shower with love in return.   Furthermore, He wanted to make persons who would grow, change and become more like Him as the ages rolled by.

It was like having children.  Well, it was having children.  Our experience of parent and child is only a beautiful, faint, reflection of the parenthood of God our Father towards us.

Like God, we want to create something of ourselves, to pass something of ourselves down the years, down the ages.  My wife and I would lie in bed as one of our children moved inside her and try to predict how that child would look, think and act.  What mixtures of us would be manifest in that tiny mind and body as it grew?  We still wonder, as they mature and become more and more unique.

With God’s help, we humans create new human beings that are far more than re-constituted packets of DNA encoded traits.  We make people that will be things entirely new, having new skills and gifts, new combinations of features and traits granted by their Creator.

All four of my children are amazing combinations of their mother and me.  My oldest son has my love of words and stories and his mother’s competitive nature.  My middle son his mother’s blue eyes, facility at mathematics and love of music, along with my tendency to read poetry and ancient stories.  My third son has my fascination with things ballistic and military combined with his mother’s thrift. My daughter has her mother’s sensitive heart, her eye for color and beauty, and my sense of pleasure at being ‘in the spotlight.’ Only God knows what they will each become.  But she and I desired to have them, desired the chances and risks that we knew must come with children.  We were willing to endure the heartbreak that love so often entails.  They are more wonderful than we had ever imagined.

Who knows what traits of God our Papa we each have?  Some we recognize, some we won’t know until the next age, when we ‘see Him as He is.’  (1 John 3:2)   Maybe He will stand beside us, before a great mirror and say “Look, there, you see how much you look like me all along?”  “Yes, Father, yes, I see it now,” we will reply with unsuppressed joy and the tears of realization.

The important message is this:  We were not tragic problems for God, who rolled His eyes and said, ‘what now?”  We were not accidents to be ‘dealt with’.  Knowing what we would be, He still desired us.

I’ve heard so many times the little saying, “God without man is still God.  Man without God is nothing”.  It’s true on a level.  I understand the point.  Without my children, I would still be me.  I would remain Edwin Leap, Jan’s husband, a medical doctor and writer; and I would be tragically well-rested.

But now that I’ve had them, I am forever altered.  I could lose them; it happens all the time.  But if I did, I would ache with a void unlike anything I could have known before I learned to love them.  I think that God aches with every loss of His children.  He doesn’t smile, or feel triumphant that justice prevailed and a sinner was punished and lost to eternity.  He weeps.  As it says in 2 Peter 3:9, “… He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”

So what is this message?  God desired us from the beginning of creation, loved us while we were sinners and pursues us to the very brink of our earthly existence, trying to pull us back to Him.  We were, after the fall, a treasure to be recovered. And like every good father, He always does whatever He can to preserve us for Himself, to keep us with Him.  Without us, He is still God.  But He tries desperately hard not to lose us.  Just look at how He sent His Son to find us and bring us home, so that we can all be tucked in safely as the darkness falls!  And so we can all be with Him for that first big breakfast when the new dawn finally rises.

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