Sunday, June 19, 2016

Fathers: Heavenly and Earthly

Fathers will be the main topic in the news on this Fathers' Day. Already, I've seen the results of an AAP study on the importance of fathers in the lives of children. In a nutshell, the study said that fathers are more involved in the lives of their children than ever more. Fathers are deeply concerned about the time they spend at work and away from their children. Fathers make a bigger difference in the lives of their children than most people realize.

I was surprised there was money to fund this study. The findings seemed nothing more than would be expected, but apparently not everyone understands. Fathers are important.

Jesus spoke often of His Heavenly Father and, in John 10:30 said, "I and the Father are one."

The word translated as father is "pat─ôr". This word is used 415 times in the New Testament, indicating both heavenly father and earthly father. Blue Letter Bible provides such rich insights that I've decided to share just a few today.

A father is more than a male ancestor. The word literally means "nourisher, protector, upholder." A father is "one who has infused his own spirit into others, who actuates and governs their minds," "one who takes charge of the interests of others."

The role of a father is a heavy responsibility, for our earthly fathers stand as a flesh-and-blood example of our Heavenly Father. It's a hard job, one in which mere humans are destined to fail.

Fathers, take heart. Our Heavenly Father is more than able to demonstrate His great love for us, even when you stumble and fall.

Children of fathers, offer grace to those who've stumbled and thanks to those who've done their very best. 

Today, be sure to express gratitude for the role of your earthly father, for he has infused his spirit into yours, but don't forget to thank your heavenly Father, too. 

Jesus described Our Father as loving, kind, generous, forgiving, involved in the intimate details of our lives. He listens to us, and He responds, every time we call upon Him.

"Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?" Matthew 6:26 esv

Today, look outside at the birds. You'll not see a skinny, underfed bird among them. Our Heavenly Father provides for their every need, and they know it. 

Take heart in that truth. He sees, He loves, He provides. 

We have a Good Father who loves us, and always will. He's the kind of Daddy who takes delight in His children. 

Today, let's honor fathers everywhere, but especially the Father who loves us most.

Happy Fathers' Day, Abba.
In case you missed these, here are the links to a couple more posts about fathers:
The Value of a Life: We are Deeply Loved
Teach us to Pray: Our Father Aba-na

#FathersDay #fathers #abba