Some people have more than one father, due to marriage, adoption or the like. And some people may feel as though they have none at all.
Whatever your answers – there’s ONE father you’ve definitely got to meet!
Before I introduce him, I want you to know I’m grateful you’ve joined me for today’s “Mornings with Bishop Robert” where we’ll be talking about an amazing father. My goal is to introduce people to the Jesus they never knew, and help them get to know Him and His word personally – and better ! If our time together today speaks to your heart, then let me invite you to like, subscribe and share it with a friend!
Some years ago the CEO of a large greeting-card company decided to do something special for Mother’s Day. They got permission to enter the federal prison a few miles away from the corporate headquarters, inviting inmates to send a free card to their Mom. So many inmates came to their table they ran out of cards! They had to go get more. The event was such a success they arranged to do the same thing on Father’s Day. Not one prisoner felt the need to send a card to his Dad. In fact, when asked about it, many had no idea who their father was.
I don’t know, obviously, if your father was an amazing role model or a source of incredible pain. I do know that the relationship you have with your earthly father can have a huge impact on how you view a relationship with your Heavenly Father.
A preacher I was with last week shared the story of a teenage girl who had visited his church, heard the message of salvation and had come forward at the end of the service for prayer. As she knelt there at the altar rail, head bowed and her hair hanging over her face, he came over to lead her in prayer. When the preacher invited her to pray with him to her Heavenly Father the girl lifted her head and looked at him. Her left eye was black and swollen shut, her lower lip was clearly split. She said, “Mister, I think I’ve got all the ‘father’ I can handle right now.”
Today’s verse says THE LORD IS LIKE A FATHER TO HIS CHILDREN, TENDER AND COMPASSIONATE.
Her father was NOT tender and compassionate, to say the least.
A father is supposed to be a mixture of strength and understanding; he’s supposed to be powerful enough to protect and loving enough to nurture. His character ought to have a sufficient foundation of strength so that he is capable of being tender and compassionate, too. This is the character we see from God the Father.
The sad part of the inmates without any connection to their fathers is the critical role a father plays in the life of his children; and most especially his sons. A son naturally desires to have a good relationship with his dad. I know, because I’ve struggled with this, both as a son and as a father. I’ve had to apologise to my children for not living up to the standards of a godly father; and I’ve had to make deliberate efforts to make the changes in my life that move me closer to the mark. I’m not there yet, but I’m pressing on.
Three decades ago a magazine ran a story about a Spanish father and son who had become estranged. The son ran away, and the father tried to find him. He searched to no avail. Finally, in a final desperate attempt to find him, the father put an ad in “La Razón,” then the most popular daily newspaper in Spain. The ad read: “Dear Paco, meet me in front of this newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you. Your Father.” On Saturday 800 sons named “Paco” showed up, looking for forgiveness and love from their fathers.
It may be that you, too, are looking for the love of a father who is caring, compassionate, tenderhearted and wise. One who can be trusted to care for you as a father was intended to.
If so, that relationship is a prayer away.
The bible relates the story of a father who had two sons. One of them demanded his share of the inheritance, took it and squandered it recklessly. When he found himself out of money and without the friends it bought him, he was left homeless and without food. When he finally came to his senses he decided to return home. Though he was convinced he’d ruined his relationship as a son, he was hoping a job and some food.
But his father had been watching for his return. The young man’s dad ran to meet him, embraced him and kissed him. He quickly let his son know that the restored relationship the future held was more important than the failures of his past. He said, “my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.”
Come home to a heavenly father who loves you, is watching for you and will embrace you with joy. He’s waiting. He’s waiting for you.
THE LORD IS LIKE A FATHER TO HIS CHILDREN, TENDER AND COMPASSIONATE