Who is God?

Before beginning a lifelong relationship with someone, it’s nice to know who they are. It’s why we date. If you’re thinking about a relationship with God, or if you already have one, I thought you might like to know who he is.

I found a great answer from David, God’s chosen king. (David is an interesting guy. I value his insight. Here’s his resume: shepherd, youngest brother, slayer of Goliath, musician, poet, hunted by King Saul, anointed king of Israel, warrior, adulterer, murderer, father, ancestor of Jesus). Here’s what David writes in Psalm 68:

5 A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows,
is God in his holy dwelling.
6 God sets the lonely in families,
he leads out the prisoners with singing;
but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.

Let me make this a little more personal by telling you how God has been and done all this for me.

A father to the fatherless

I was an unplanned, unwanted pregnancy in 1970 Texas. My mother had the courage to see the pregnancy through and give me up for adoption through Lutheran Social Services. She died before I could meet her, but I am thankful for her selfless act. My father never knew about me.

God already knew me, though. He gave me adoptive parents that loved and cared for me when I was unable to care for myself.

a defender of widows

My dad died in February. It’s been hard on my mom, but I’ve watched God meet her needs financially and emotionally time and again.

God sets the lonely in families

Not only did God provide an adoptive family for me, he has also provided important outposts along the way. When I left home for college he gave me a football coach and, ultimately, a lifelong friend. I lived with his family for over a year and it’s the first place I visit when I return home to the Midwest. Later, he gave me my wife and her family. I am, by nature, introverted and without these key people, my life would be desolate and lonely.

he leads out the prisoners with singing

I have the terrible experience of choosing sin over God. I have been imprisoned by my sinful actions. Through Jesus’ sacrifice and corresponding grace, I have been forgiven. God has rescued me, literally, when I’ve been lost and without hope. When I’ve done my worst, reached my end, and finally repented (walked away), God has led me to safety. This being-welcomed-home is pure joy and cause for worship and singing.


Now you know God: father, defender, provider, deliverer. He will be all this and more for you. Begin your new family tree today. Welcome home brothers and sisters!


About Tony Schmitz

Tony Schmitz received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Temple University in 1993, his MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1996, and his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida in 1999. He is a mechanical engineering professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
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