Today’s Passage: Luke 11:1-13
This Sunday, our society takes a moment to celebrate our fathers. Personally, I have been blessed with a wonderful, godly man as my father. He’s a gentle man who consistently encourages his children – to this day! – to be the best that we can be. I know without a shadow of doubt that my father loves me – and that will always be the case. He (along with my mother – mothers are great too!) will always celebrate my joys, and lament with me in my sorrows. If I am ever in need, I know that my father will do everything within his power to help me. He isn’t perfect, but then who of us is? But what matters is this: he is for me.
But I am also very aware that there are many in our society – and in our church – who have a very different history with their fathers. It’s a sad fact that for many families, fathers are absent for the majority of their children’s childhood. Many have had fathers who have been absent, hurtful, or even abusive.
I recall a very disturbing true story about a boy, struggling with his brother’s suicide, being given as a Christmas present from his parents the very gun that his brother had shot himself with. Not all fathers (or mothers) are positive role models for their children.
But, as Christians, we have a role model that the world doesn’t have. We are children of God. He is our Father; the One who goes out of His way to love and care and support us. He is for us and not against us. Ours is the Father who waits desperately for His wayward children to come home. And, when they return in shame and rags from a life of rebellion and pain, ours is the God who runs with arms open wide to welcome them home. Our heavenly Father is the One who longs for us to desire Him more than anything else; and who has established a program to see us, His adoptive children, shaped into His own image – into the likeness of His Own Divine, Eternal Son. Ours is the Father who loves us enough to endure the shame and pain of sending His Divine Son – Himself fully God – to die for us. Ours is the Father who is willing to spend the ultimate price for the sake of His children.
And ours is the Father who is able to do all that He desires. Ours is the Father whom not even death can vanquish, Ours is the Father who really is “the best” at everything.
In our morning service this weekend, as we look at Luke 11, Jesus encourages us to approach God as Father with unashamed boldness, knowing that He cares for us. Jesus wants us to know that we don’t have to do life alone. Our Heavenly Father is always there for us – and with us by His Spirit.
God is our Father. Let us celebrate that, and honour Him as such. And for the dads out there, let’s look to him for what being a dad is really all about…