We want, in fact, not so much a father in heaven as a grandfather in heaven: a senile benevolence who, as they say, “liked to see young people enjoying themselves” and whose plan for the universe was simply that it might be truly said at the end of each day, “a good time was had by all.”
There was a time when He wasn’t just a Father in heaven. He was the Creator who strolled along beside His creation in the garden. But we weren’t satisfied or “happy” enough with that.
Then, with all the trouble we had made for ourselves in our pursuit of a good time, He returned to try again to salvage His unsatisfied creation, coming to us borne from a woman, who raised Him with a man to guide and protect Him through to adulthood. He then walked beside us again, teaching, healing, helping, embracing and weeping alongside us. Few really listened, understood, believed a message of grace and forgiveness that can only happen at the price of rejection, sacrifice, suffering, death.
This was not exactly a “good time was had by all.”. We had our chance at that and blew it. There is no enjoyment in paying the cost of redeeming the fallen and broken but there is joy in the outcome. That takes a Father beyond any we can imagine–one who takes the wounds for us, leaving us unscathed.
Goodness prevails over good times. Every time.