Pastor Marvin Winans tells of a time when he was a little boy and he and his brother went to pick on their youngest brother, Bebe. He told him, "Bebe, you're not one of us. Mama and Daddy found you under a bush."
Bebe went running to his father and reported what he had been told. His father said, "Bebe, you are my beloved son, and I am your father. I have loved you from the day you were born." Marvin reports, "And then Daddy gave us a whooping, but it was worth it because we got to see Bebe cry!"
A few months roll past, and again Marvin cornered Bebe and told him, "Bebe, you're not one of us. Someone left you on the porch and Mama and Daddy just brought you in because you were making so much noise." Again Bebe ran to his father, and again his father assured him, "Bebe, I am your father. I have always loved you, and I will always love you." Again, Marvin got in trouble, but he said it was worth it.
More time rolled past, and again the brothers cornered their younger sibling. The told him, "Bebe, you're not here to stay. You're just here for a little while, and then we're putting you out again." Bebe ran to his father, and this time his father said, "Bebe, I am your father, and you are my son, but if you come to me with this again, I'm not going to whoop them, I'm going to whoop you because you never believe me when I tell you that I am your father!"
Winans says that some of the greatest brokenness in this world comes not from the things that we suffer or the forces that come against us, but from the fact that we forget that we are beloved children of the Father, that he has always loved us and always will, and nothing will ever change that.
"For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 8:38-39.