Many of us are familiar with this prayer from Matthew 6:9-13 which says,
9 Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,Matthew 6:9-13
hallowed be your name.[a]
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,[b]
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,[c]
12 and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.”[d]
Who is our Father in heaven?
Is he like men on earth?
What comes into your heart when you think of the word, “father”?
Do you shudder?
Does your heart melt?
It is so polarizing, depending on what kind of father or fathers we have known.
Have we experienced their kindness, or debilitating pain? Or some mixture of both?
Have they pushed their agendas & mindsets on us harshly, or even cared to ask for our thoughts? Or have they sat down with us and truly listened to every word, then weighed in with life-changing wisdom?
It’s good to know that God of the bible is called Abba. This word is Aramaic and is related to the Hebrew Av from which Abba or “father” is derived.
This is Daddy, or Papa, or Baba, a term of endearment towards a father.
Romans 8:15 speaks of God as Abba.
15 So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children.[a] Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”[b]
As I woke up today, the light was shining in all around me from a sunny day after many cloudy days.
I would go in and out of sleep and hear whispers to my heart of who I am, as God’s treasure.
Whispers from the Holy Spirit.
I do believe God to be three persons (Matthew 28:19-20). I know it doesn’t make sense, but I think it doesn’t make sense in a beautiful way, not an unintelligent way.
I’m thankful to not quite understand how God can be Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I love thinking on this mystery.
And I love addressing each one. The Holy Spirit makes Jesus known perfectly, and Jesus is a perfect representation of the Father. And the Father is “one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” (Ephesians 4:6).
New International VersionHebrews 1:3
The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven
I think my favorite thing I’ve come to recognize in interpreting Scripture from the Bible is seeing one principle repeated throughout all 66 books in different ways.
So I can find God as a father in the old testament and all throughout the entire Bible. These echoes and mirrors we can see throughout the 66 books makes me feel a sense of awe. So many different authors from different times and yet the connections are woven through every page. This is truly why I believe these words to be inspired by the Holy Spirit.
And so, “Father” becomes something new to me.
Something different and better than I’ve ever seen modeled to me.
I’m thankful for every moment my dad and my father-in-law have shown me what the Father-heart of God is like. It’s generous, giving everything to provide for me, listening, kind, turning attention towards me, enabling me to skip out on some things in life that would hurt me by sharing wisdom freely without judgement.
And yet, that is just a whisper of who God the Father really is.
I don’t know about you, but I need to keep getting to know Him.
I have been getting to know Him in reading His word, through talking to Him and listening for that still small voice, or His shouts in the beauty of nature.
He is so much better than we ever dreamed and He has good things in store for us.
God is like a mother, more nurturing than we ever dreamed and He has comfort for us.
God uses all of His power to reach our hearts. He never uses it against us.
Will you join me in forgiving our fathers who have gotten it so wrong sometimes?
I don’t say that lightly, for many of you have seen far more abuse and only terrible things from that man known as “father.”
But I truly have found that forgiveness releases all of that bad from me, and I imagine giving all of that brokenness to my Father in heaven, letting Him absolve it in Himself, in His Son who died for us and was resurrected, who conquered all of that horrible would-be inheritance.
And then we get to go free. To become good fathers and mothers ourselves, and ask His forgiveness when we fail in our own fallen state.
His goodness keeps coming for us. His forgiveness is always there.
HE is always here, present with us. Not absent. Never unkind. Always using His power to give us good things.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”James 1:17
I love the whole book of James, such a good read!
Much love to you,