In honor of Father’s Day, I want to shine a light on the GOOD, GOOD dads who represent our GOOD, GOOD Father God. I truly believe our earthly dads were designed to be the visual of what our heavenly Father looks like. And honestly this is what messes people up, when he just doesn’t represent well.
WHERE I SEE GOOD
I had the privilege of marrying a man who was a great dad to our six children. Often I stood to the side marveling and thinking to myself – oh wow – THIS is what it looks like! My kids had the utmost respect for him; he taught them by example.
I just want to list his character traits and tell me if you think it represents God well – he was firm but just, patient, understanding, kind, loving, caring, fun, funny, creative, hard working, practical, driven, passionate; he cared for the widow and the orphans; he helped others without recognition; he saw the best in people and yes even in the worst of people; he gave his all in every single thing he did. Sound like God? Exactly. THAT was the whole idea on God’s mind when He created dads. He wanted them to guide their families to Him.
Another privilege I have had is watching my sons and sons in law who are dads. I see ALL those same character traits in them. I have no doubt that the ten kids between them are in good hands to see God.
A FATHER’S LOVE
God never wanted to be nor should He be the One we fear to come to. His heart is towards us, not against us. He understands us; He created us! I spent most of my life in distrust of Him – (because of not having that normal earthly relationship) approaching Him just close enough to still keep my distance. You know; in case He failed me or disappointed me or left me or mocked me. You think THAT is the relationship He wanted to have with His kids? I think not.
Dads are a child’s first hero, first teacher, first mentor, first love. “As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him.” (Psalm 103:13) Fear in this verse is NOT the kind of fear like terror stricken of being hurt or abused. It is a respect, a reverence and a trust, that the dad who loves so well can be trusted, and followed. Don’t you know that children by their mere nature, are followers? They WANT to be led.
When you feel safe, you are not looking over your shoulder – you are not suspicious – you are not looking for a devil around every corner – you can breathe – you can rest – you can trust – all fear is gone. And I DO mean ALL fear. You know why? “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” (l John 4:18) THIS is the Father’s love for us, and THIS is what He wanted for fathers and children down here on earth. He went before us to show us the way, and how to do it.
“The Lord your God, who is going before you, will fight for you as He did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes. (stop right here for a second – children need to see their dads fighting for them/defending them – right before their own eyes). And in the wilderness, there you saw how the Lord your God carried you ( His compassion, love, gentleness, humility, kindness), as a father carries his son (be still my heart.), all the way you went until you reached this place.” (Deuteronomy 1:29-31, with comments). Wow. What a picture of fatherhood.
EXHAUSTING BUT WORTH IT
So, Happy Father’s Day to ALL the dads representing God. It’s exhausting and you don’t get enough sleep or recognition BUT you are changing generations. You are raising up sons and daughters who are strong, brave, secure, and fierce forces to be reckoned with! Do not EVER think that a hug is just a hug or a pay check is just a pay check or a mowed lawn is just a mowed lawn. It’s ALL a big deal – the advice, the cheers, the ice cream cones, the car rides, the standing on the side lines, the living room dance parties, the chickens and goats and dinosaurs and Peppa Pig. Yes, even that infamous baby shark song. Sing it with them while you can. Never stop being the very best you can be (it is a journey from start to finish/ not done in one day…) because you are changing generations to come. Your time, your attention,your tenacity, your faith, and your love is NEVER wasted.
“I cover up the pain that I’m lost in
‘Cause I wanna be enough and it’s exhausting.
Trying so hard but really I’m just wearing my heart out
And I find myself right on the verge of a breakdown.
Then You hold me in Your hands,
Remind me who You are and who I am.
I was born broken so You can make me whole
I’ll bring my dirt and let You wash over me like water.
I was born to need You, to wipe the tears I cry.
Yes, You made me a child so You could be my Father.
I’m Your child and You’re my Father.
Even when I’m lost and I don’t feel found;
You lead me, protect me, bring me home.
I’m weak and afraid but You never let go.
And I don’t have to hide ’cause You already know,
Already know You’re still my Father”
(“Father” by Jeremy Camp)
Dad, YOU are God’s reflection in the earth. Every thing you do and say, matters. Without YOU, how will they see God?
Happy Father’s Day!
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