Wednesdays are my medicine days. That’s when my two grandkids come over and spend the day with Carol and me. Smith is 2.4 years old and Jethro is 8 months. I absolutely love every minute I get to spend with those little guys, my medicine men.
Smith calls me “Papa.” From the minute he lands at our place, we’re busy discovering life together. Often he will find our matching hats or gloves, and then we’re ready to go. Smith loves to talk. He’s very creative and so full of energy and ideas. Do I sound like a proud papa?
Two of Smith’s most common phrases these days are, “You help me?” and “I need.” Need what? Well, you name it. “I need to go outside, I need to watch for trash trucks, I need to go potty, I need some fruit snacks, I need a band aid.”
We usually go out in the backyard to dig for rocks or snails, he in his red and yellow car and me in my wheelchair, often using a bungee cord to pull the red wagon. Then we make a rock pile or watch how far the snail will crawl. All the while with interruptions of, “Papa, I hear an airplane, I need to see it. You help me look, Papa?”
Last week I struggled with a lot of pain in this daily leukemia survival with blasted side effects. Getting in and out of the wheelchair was difficult and frustrating. Each day filled with pain that must be overcome. And then I realized my own constant prayer, “Dear Heavenly Father, I NEED! YOU HELP?” What hit me at that moment was the fact that the most endearing and significant name for God in the Bible is the Aramaic word “Abba.” It means Daddy or Papa. Abba was a common term that young children would use to address their fathers. It signifies the close, intimate relationship of a father to his child, as well as the childlike trust that a young child puts in his Daddy.
When Smith says, “Papa, I need” or “Papa, you help,” I’m reminded that I have a real heavenly father who wants to be known by that name where all reliance, trust, and dependence is on Him. It’s called faith. “Abba Father, please HELP me because this new normal is really hard.” “Abba Father, I NEED you. I need your healing, forgiveness, hope, assurance.” Like a child, I realize again that my heavenly father is more than willing to hang with me and be my PAPA who is closer than we realize or imagine.
Galatians 4:6 says, “And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba Father.” The Message paraphrase says it like this: “You can tell for sure that you are now fully adopted as his own children because God sent the Spirit of his Son into our lives crying out, “Papa! Father!”
Have you ever thought about God as your Daddy, your Papa? When Jesus taught us to pray “Our Father” in Matthew 6:9, the word in Greek is the word “Pater” – “Abba Father.”
I’m so glad that God never gets too busy running this universe and commanding the angels that He forgets us. He wants to be with you like there is no one else on earth and nothing else for Him to do. That’s the God who loves you and is reaching out to you. That’s how important you are to Him.
Currently I have a great report from my oncologist. Her words in a recent text: “David’s spinal fluid was negative for malignant cells and blood was negative for bcr-abl molecule.” That means I’m in remission again and have more time!
Please do this with me before you quit reading.
In a prayer, just say, “Dear Abba Father, I give you my heart and my life. I need you. I want you to help me. And please help Dave Steck gain more strength. Give him a deeper desire to do your will. And please keep on healing him. In Jesus name and for Papa God’s Kingdom sake, Amen.”
I love and appreciate all your prayers and support,