Greetings Church Family,
Now under different conditions that could be an extremely insulting question, particularly to your mother. But I am not speaking here naturally, I am speaking supernaturally. I’m not speaking physically, I am speaking spiritually. That is a legitimate question.
You see, physically everyone has only one father, and can only have one father. But spiritually, you have one of two fathers. Jesus said on one occasion to the Pharisees, ”You are of your father the devil.” (John 8:44a) The vast majority of people in this world today are, at this moment, children of the devil. But there are those who have become the children of God.
Now there are three key words to keep in mind if you are going to determine who your father is. The first is the word faith. The second is the word family. The third is the word father. For it is by faith that you enter into the family of God, and therefore have God as your Father.
Father’s Day is always a special occasion each year as we honor our earthly fathers. For some it’s clearly a difficult day as they remember those fathers who have passed into eternity. Our fathers are precious to us. My father, who is deceased now, was a wonderful father to me. My father was the one who gave me my love for God’s Word and the things of God. He studied it, taught it, and lived it out before me. My Dad has been a great father to me. Thank you Dad!
Many do not know their father as I did. Many are adopted. Chosen by a mom and dad to become part of their family. Out of all the possibilities, adoptive parents choose their child or children. How special. I think my dad got a good deal…LOL. But he had no choice in what he got. Adoptive parents have a choice.
DO YOU KNOW WHO YOUR FATHER IS?
You see over the years and in fact from before I was born, Father God had his eye on me (and you!);
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” (Psalm 139:13-16)
On many adoption information sheets a birth mother says, ‘it would be in the baby’s interests if he had a Father.’ How right she is! Discover who your Heavenly Father is:
‘A Father to the fatherless, a defender of widows is God in His Holy dwelling’ (Psalm 68:5)
And who promises: ‘I will be a Father to you and you will be my sons and daughters says the Lord Almighty’ (2 Corinthians 6:18)
We live in what has been described as an orphan generation because so many father’s (and sometimes mothers) are either absent or have deserted their children. Sometimes this has been through no fault of their own so we must be careful not to judge. Sadly, some have grown up with a poor representation of Father God. God is NOT like our earthly father’s however great they may have been. He is the most amazing loving gentle Father.
We need to understand that our parents made lots of mistakes, often completely unintentionally. They were wearing ‘L plates’ – they were just ‘kids who grew up and had kids’. As a parent, and grandparent now, I can say in all honesty that nothing prepares you for being a parent. When you were growing up your parents may have been going through stuff. They may have known no better. They didn’t do any classes. So please – don’t JUDGE – instead make a choice to FORGIVE.
WHERE WOULD I BE WITHOUT FATHER GOD?
From an early age – My dad was everything to me. My Father and my closest friend. He is one I totally rely on because He is completely dependable. He never let me down – He was a good, good Father.
Can I ask you, ‘do you know who your father is?’ God is our true Father. Jesus came to reveal Him as Father.
There are some myths about God our Father I would like dispel on this Father’s Day.
- God Is A Harsh Disciplinarian. Some will have experienced parents who were aggressive, harsh, unloving, strict, moody, unjust, unkind, inconsistent and even abusive leaving us with the impression that nothing we ever do is right!
God is NOT like that. He is perfect love. He is slow to anger and abounding in love. He loves and accepts you and I even when we mess up.
“I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.” (Jeremiah 31:3)
“See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” (1 John 3:1)
He loves us so much and calls us His children. He is the most amazing and loving Father that has ever existed. Simply put – He is never harsh and He loves YOU. He is for you and not against you.
- God Isn’t There When I Need Him. Many children grow up experiencing the absence of a father (sometimes tragically through death) or through the demands of parents work life, career, leisure activities, hobbies etc. All that some have is memories of broken promises and hours of loneliness & neglect. Others have memories of parents who never showed up for sports events, school plays or even when present were pre-occupied with a myriad things.
Maybe you just can’t seem to feel God and He appears absent. You were used to that as you grew up. The truth is this – God isn’t pre-occupied – His chief occupation is you. The Bible says that He is omnipresent – meaning He is everywhere present! It also suggests that He is thinking loving thoughts towards you.
God is very much present and just as much present now as He was from your very first steps, through the highs and the lows, the victories and failures, the hurts, battles, disappointments and loneliness. He was there then and He is still with you today.
God has ALWAYS been there when I’ve needed Him. At some of my lowest points and during some of the fiercest battles, bereavement and loss, illness & difficulties. He has always been there. Ever present.
God needed to remind Joshua several times that He was with him and would never leave him: ‘As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Joshua 1:5)
Jesus’ final words to his disciples were these, “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”” (Matthew 28:20)
Maybe it’s time you put that misconception to bed once and for all.
- God Breaks His Promises. Some of us have experienced fathers who’ve promised the earth and failed to deliver anything! In fact as we look back we see a litany of broken promises. Whether it be at birthdays, Christmas, holidays, trips, toys, games or even time. They kept promising but failed to deliver. Tomorrow simply never comes!
Maybe you have spent your early years being let down and seeing promises broken. It becomes part of who we are. The misconception is that, ‘God cannot be trusted to keep His promises’. Yet His Word states:
“The Lord is trustworthy in all he promises and faithful in all he does.” (Psalm 145:13)
God always does what He says! Father God does what He promises!
“For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ” (2 Corinthians 1:20)
He NEVER breaks his promises.
- God Is Mean. I don’t know what your childhood experiences were like? My Dad was obsessed with paying off his mortgage as soon as he could and so it seemed like we experienced austerity for most of my early childhood. One packet of digestive biscuits and one bottle of homemade lemonade to last a week! Nothing else to snack on!!
Maybe whenever you asked for something you were always turned down and then you’d see your parents wasting their money on non essentials. God isn’t mean. He is a good good Father:
“What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:31-32)
He’s already been so generous in blessing us with forgiveness, mercy, love & grace so He’s unlikely to withhold anything else we need. Perhaps your parents were thoughtless and selfish. Psalm 103 brings fresh perspective to the generosity of God. Why don’t you check it out in The Message version. He’s a good good Father!
- God Is Distant. You will often here people say, ‘We’re not a very huggy family’ – my adopted family were like that!
I can’t remember my parents saying ‘I love you’ I may be doing them a disservice but I don’t think they did. In fact I rarely remember them praising me at all. Those words of affirmation are so important for children as they grow up. A minister friend told me at my mother’s funeral that my mum was so proud of me. Sadly I never heard those words from her lips during my life. I loved my mum very much. She was an amazing women whose faith in God has been an inspiration to me all my life. It was incredibly strong.
Boys especially suffer when:
- They receive no physical affection from their fathers.
- They never hear ‘Son I love you.’ – Jesus needed to hear it’ (baptism and transfiguration) ‘This is my son whom I love – with Him I am well pleased.’ We need to hear it too.
- Little compassion is shown when they are upset or hurt ‘don’t cry son – real men don’t cry!’ Jesus wept. But our culture tells us that big boys don’t cry. Those boys may grow up never letting their true emotions out which has the potential to create all kinds of difficulties.
As men, we often find it easy to hug our daughters and tell them we love them. Our sons need this too. We must model father – son intimacy to our children. This will help them to discover intimacy with God and to truly know Him as Father – loving and being loved by Him. This is critical as we will not always be there for them.
One of my greatest longings was to be more intimate with God in worship and prayer. The breakthrough came at the ‘Catch The Fire’ conference in Telford, England in 1995. In a moment God dealt with the subconscious rejection I had felt from my parents. I forgave my parents and opened my heart to God’s love. I cried and cried as God dealt with the hurt and rejection I felt deep down and God set me free to discover the most incredible intimacy and relationship with Father God. I find it easy to come into His presence now. He is truly the good, good Father.
- God Doesn’t Accept Me. We live in a performance orientated society. You have to do well at school, make the team, use your talents, be loved, look great, be successful, make money etc. I spent many years trying to gain my parents love & acceptance. But my younger brother was the special one! It appeared to me, as we grew up, that he could do no wrong and I could do no right. I wondered how my mother could make that call (if only she knew!). We laugh about it now.
I’ve realized since that my parents had completely different interests to me but similar ones to my brother and that actually, they didn’t know how to show their love & acceptance to me.
We can allow our view of God to be influenced by how our parents responded to us. The truth is this:
- God loves us and accepts us just as we are.
- God loves us unconditionally
- God’s love is not based on our performance – He just loves us! Yes – even you! Nothing you can do/achieve/work at – can make Him love you any more or any less!
- Rebels – even in spite of your past rebellion – HE LOVES YOU! You may feel that God doesn’t love you or accept you. That’s how it is. In fact how could He possibly accept you? The Psalmist stated this truth:
“Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will accept me.” (Psalm 27:10)
Could you possibly be wrong in your thinking?
DO YOU KNOW WHO YOUR FATHER IS? God wants to be Father to you today. He wants to restore what is broken. In the Garden of Eden – Adam and Eve, through their own sin, caused us all to be born as orphans, separate from Father God. We have been robbed of a close relationship with Him. Jesus came to restore the relationship with Father God that was lost in the garden.
- Acknowledge Your Need. Do you know who your Heavenly Father is? Have you accepted some misconceptions about Him that are simply not true? First base is to acknowledge that and ask God to help you see things differently and for Him to restore what has been lost or stolen.
- Be Honest With God. Tell him how you feel – many of us have been taught from an early age to suppress our emotions. Many have hidden them away and stored negative feelings of anger, hurt, disappointment, fear, bitterness & guilt since childhood. Friends – let God have it all.
- Forgive Those Who Have Hurt You. Before God – forgive your father/mother/step parent or anyone else involved in the misconception, for the wrong they’ve done whether intentionally or unintentionally.
- If You’ve Sinned – Ask Father’s Forgiveness. Ask God to forgive you for your wrong attitudes, bitterness, hate, judgement and the resulting pride, jealousy, bondage, unforgiveness, independence and even separation. NB: It is wrong for a Christian to be so angry with a parent that they won’t forgive them or even speak to them. This is a snare of the enemy and will only damage you and hold you back.
- Receive The Father’s Love. Important to fill the void left by all the bad stuff. Fill the void with His love. There is a great prayer in Ephesians 3:16-21. Make it your prayer.
- Think God Thoughts.Destructive ways of thinking about ourselves often build up when we have been hurt so get into the Word of God, quote positive scripture at negative thoughts and lies & therein renew your mind.
- Honour & Bless Your Parents.Today is potentially the first day of a new life of freedom and joy. Make a decision to break the cycle of wrong relationships – be a blessing to your parents.
“Honour your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”” (Ephesians 6:2-3)
DO YOU KNOW WHO YOUR FATHER IS? If you haven’t worked it out yet….the truth is this. God is, as the song lyrics state, ‘A good good Father…..YES HE IS!!’
With Many Prayers and Christian Love,
Church Phone: 423-272-7676
Church Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rick Dinkins phone: 423-754-0750
Let us know if you have questions or if you made a decision for Christ.