It was father’s day yesterday. I wonder what comes to mind when you hear the word father? Good, Bad? Have, had never had? Role model, failure? Me, not me? Will be, won’t ever be, really want to be, was? The word is likely to cause some emotion in each one of us.
If you’re anything like me, you are extremely blessed to have a dad who evidently loves you and some of you may also have been blessed with your own children who can call you dad too. It’s easy for me to think that everyone around me is in the same boat. But then I remember that they’re not. Every family is different, every relationship that involves someone who is or could be a father is different.
So, one thought I have for you today is this: might anyone around you and close to you need someone to talk to about the topic of fatherhood? If you can think of someone, can I encourage you to initiate something? If you can’t think of someone, maybe steer your next conversation in this direction, perhaps something might come up. You might be just the person to say just the right thing into someone else’s situation. Then, as Christians, perhaps the first word that comes into our heads when we hear the word father is God. 10 points to you if it does! However negative the associations we have with the word father in an earthly sense, we can find hope and comfort in the truths we know about our heavenly father.
James 1:17 tells us that God is an unchanging Father who gives us every good and perfect gift. 1 John 3:1 speaks of the great love the Father has for us as He calls us His children. John 14:16 speaks of the Father who gives us the Holy Spirit to help us and be with us forever. Luke 6:36 reminds us to be merciful as our Father has been merciful to us. Matthew 6:14 tells us that our heavenly Father is a forgiving Father.
If, when you think ‘father’ your experience is the converse of any of this, I pray that you can find what no earthly father can ever fully live up to in our heavenly Father. And for those of us who are fathers, I pray that we would strive every day to imitate our perfect heavenly Father.
Grace and peace to you from God our Father.