It is one of those popular Christian myths that you hear going around that "if you had a bad father you will struggle to realize the goodness of your Father in heaven." I have to say that I think it's a load of rubbish. In no way am I belittling anyone's struggles, I am simply concerned that we do not enslave ourselves spiritually.
Some reasons why we should discard this myth...
1.What we need to get God's love is the Holy Spirit and the gospel (e.g. Rom 5:5). They are powerful enough to get behind all our 'issues'. The Spirit through the gospel holds out firm and sure promises to us. We must not obscure His power to reveal our Father to us, nor seek to encase ourselves with a layer of personal trauma.
2. People have bad experiences of lots of things in their lives including judges, kings, masters, saviours, helpers, sons - we don't think that people need counselling about those things. What would we do with a woman who's son had run out on her? Sympathetically suggest she needs counselling before she trust in Jesus, the Son?
3. The Bible tells us that our fathers are 'evil' (Matt 5:11) - it doesn't seem to think this is a problem for us getting God. Rather, our wonderful Father is just very different from any other Father.
4. The way we grow in maturity is not by going inwards into myself i.e. fixing my personal history and emotional baggage. Rather, we grow by moving out of ourselves towards God, through the Scriptures, empowered by the Spirit of wisdom and revelation (Eph 1:18). This will do everything necessary to convince us of God's love. I don't need to go deeper into myself, but deeper into God's word.
Some brief reminders on the character of our Father from the Sermon on the Mount...
Dwells in heaven (6:9 etc)
Gracious to the undeserving and evil (5:45)
Kind sutainer of all things (6:26)
Bringer of rewards (6:4 etc)
Supplier of our needs (6:11)
Giver of gifts (7:9-11)