Thursday, September 10, 2009


During periods of emptiness, uncertainty, restlessness and hunger for closeness with Jesus, it isn’t unusual for Him to reveal buried sin as the culprit. A number of years ago, it seemed like the Lord was ignoring my prayers when finally, He clearly instructed, “Go to your father and ask for forgiveness.”

Dumb-founded, I questioned God’s direction …. “Why do I need to ask him for forgiveness? He’s the one who abandoned me!”

The Lord gently inquired,
“Bonnie, haven’t you held anger, bitterness,
and hatred toward him all these years?”
“I guess you could say that,” I mumbled.
“Is this not sin,” He continued.
Shock by the revelation,
I humbly acknowledged, “Yes, Lord, it is.”
“Then it needs to be dealt with,” He urged.

“What he did to us was not right and I’ll never say that it was,” I insisted. “I’ll never say that it was either. But, it’s My job to deal with his sin, not yours,” He countered.

“I’ve heard your prayers. I desire deeper intimacy in our relationship even more than you. Yet, your unconfessed sin is in the way,” He explained. Knowing that I was losing momentum in my defense, I continued, “But, I was just a little girl. He was supposed to be my daddy. Shouldn’t he be coming to me?”

His counter-response took me off-guard and penetrated deeply, “Aren’t you the one who professes to be Jesus’ follower?” I had been betrayed by my earthly father and it felt like my heavenly Father was now expecting an unbearable response.

With little energy left, I whispered, “Lord, do you have any idea what he did to us? This man may be my biological father but, why would you want me to be exposed to his lifestyle? How can I be buddies with that?”

With indescribable love, He responded, “My beloved daughter, I’m not asking you to be his friend.

This isn’t about your relationship with him.
We are talking about you and Me.
You have sinned against him.
Consequently, that has created a chasm between you and Me.
It boils down to this…
do you want deeper intimacy with Me or not?
If so, you must deal with your sin.”

My mind was spinning and my heart was trembling with fear. Not knowing what to expect if I yielded, I bartered, “OK! I’ll go. If he asks for forgiveness, so will I.” Through the Holy Spirit’s precious persistence, the desire for obedience to my heavenly Father finally triumphed.

With a clear mind and settled heart and without regard for my earthly father’s response, I went to the man who had abandoned momma with their six children forty years before. I was three then and hadn’t seen him since I was ten. I had no recollection of any positive memories connected to him, not even calling him, “Daddy.” Yet, looking him in the eye, I confessed with conviction, “I’ve held anger, bitterness and hatred toward you for all these years. That is sin. Would you please forgive me?”

Had I any expectations, I would have been disappointed. There was no sweet reuniting after years of separation between father and daughter. However, I rested in satisfying peace knowing I had been obedient to my heavenly Father. Despite my earthly father’s response, my intimacy with Jesus has grown just as He had promised.

“when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone,
forgive him,
so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins”
[Mark 11:25].


P.S. I am not suggesting that God requires a face-to-face dealing in every instance. I’m simply sharing how He directed me.

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