To me, one of the saddest verses in the entire Bible is Jeremiah 3:19, where God says to His wayward people, “How gladly would I treat you like sons…. I thought you would call me ‘Father’ and not turn away from following me.”
Here you have God, the supreme being of the universe, the creator of all that is, yearning for a father-relationship with His children. And so He grieves: “I thought you would call me ‘Father.’” He owns everything—except the affection of His children. How tragic!
I think it is so very wonderful that God wants us to call Him Father. It’s part of the magnificence of the Lord’s Prayer that it begins, “Our Father.”
Many women tell me they have trouble thinking of God as their heavenly Father because they have had such despicable earthly fathers. Rather than loving, cherishing, and encouraging them, their dads molested and abused them, or simply disappeared out of their lives. They have no concept of what it is like to have a father who will protect them or can be depended on to be there.
Hannah Whitall Smith helps us conceptualize God the Father’s love when she writes,
Put together all the tenderest love you know of, the deepest you have ever felt and the strongest that has ever been poured out on you; heap on it all the love of all the loving human hearts in the world; then multiply it by infinity, and you will have a faint glimpse of the love and grace of God!
Clearly, God wants a relationship with us. His Father-heart yearns for us to want to be close to Him. Mrs. Smith says,
That…He should need us, seems incomprehensible…. That His desire should be toward us, passes the bounds of human belief. Yet He says it, and what can we do but believe Him?
Take a moment today to thank God for being your heavenly Father. He’s waiting to hear you call His name.
 Hannah Whitall Smith, God Is Enough (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1986), page unknown.
What is the saddest verse in the Bible to you?