Okay, I'm just throwing this out there.
A friend of mine who always stretches my mind with crazy huge ideas tossed this one out there to chew on, and I haven't decided what I think yet, but hopefully as is usually the case, I'll have thought it through by the end of this blog!
God chose to portray himself as a good Father. It's a beautiful perfect analogy right? Our obedience to Him, His protection of us, His grace and forgiveness and unfailing love...
But a truly good (earthly) father added to those attributes also prepares his son/daughter to stand independent of him as they mature...
He sets the example and equips them with the skills, self image, and confidence to be independent and self sufficient. Kids who don't get that grow up with dependency issues, low self esteem, no confidence in themselves etc.
So how does this apply to the image of our heavenly Father who by all means never paints an incomplete picture and is very thorough in his portrayal of himself through our earthly relationships...
So independence, confidence, self image...does God want us to develop these attributes spiritually? Do we mature beyond the coddled infant or naive child to a strong confident spiritual adult? Do we learn from God, accept his armor, gifts, knowledge, authority, and move in his will as spiritual adults?
I see that in Him I am strong
I see that in Him I am beautiful
I see that in Him I have authority
I see that in Him I have no fears
I picture the spartan father and son in 300. Fighting beside each other, each with authority and skill, but the father is still the father and the son knows he only has what the father gave him. The son has the spartan spirit and the father trusts his son to follow and wield it in the spartan name.
This concept was scary to me because I felt in some ways you could take it and abuse it. That's God's place not mine! I am nothing! I am humble and wicked and God is the only one with power and goodness.
But in his grace as my father He as given me His goodness and His power...
I am His daughter, His image. I do nothing in my own power, but in the power my Father has given me.
My loyalty can be to none other.