“Being Thankful for Our Father and Fathers”

This Sunday is Father’s Day, and it’s fitting that the text we come to this week in worship reminds us to be thankful for our heavenly Father. Everything good we have is a gift from our Father (see 1 Tim 4:4). James says it this way: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights” (Jas 1:17).

So this Father’s Day, take some time to reflect on God as your perfect Father. Thank him for the gift of his Son Jesus, by whom we call him Father. As John says, “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are” (1 Jn 3:1). We have an eternal Father-child relationship with God through Christ.

This relationship is not just in name, but is experienced. We can approach God as our Father and trust him to be our Father. Jesus said, “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” (Mat 7:11). Any blessing of fatherhood we receive from our earthly fathers is just a glimpse of what we receive as God’s child.

Let’s reverse the principle. Our earthly fathers can reflect God’s character as they love, give, teach, and protect their children. Take some time to thank your father for all the ways he has taught you about God, by his words and example. But for many, Father’s Day is a yearly reminder of just how rare this blessing is, with our fathers either absent or embodying a fatherhood altogether different than God’s. This is a tragic reality that has touched us all in some way.

If that is your situation, who has stepped in to fill this void in your life? Who has been a spiritual father to you? Those who mentor, teach, encourage, and sacrificially give of themselves in this way remind us that fatherhood so often transcends biological or legal titles. This Father’s Day, thank a man in your life who has been a spiritual father to you.

This Sunday we gather to worship our perfect, loving Father in heaven who gives us every good gift. Reflect on the relationship you have with him. Thank him for being your good Father. Take the invitation of Jesus, the Son, to come to God as he taught us: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.”

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