Jesus was strategic in teaching us a prayer that can unify Christians. We call this prayer “The Lord’s Prayer.” The prayer begins with the words, “Our Father.” When Jesus teaches us to pray “Our Father,” He is teaching us to understand that we are dearly beloved children of God. Learning to know your true identity as a dearly beloved child of God will free you to become the mature Christian that you long to be. It will guide you to see other human beings as His children, too. When you pray to God as your Father, you will recognize that His enemies are your enemies. His enemies are Satan and his fallen angels. He loves His children created in His image. Praying to God as your Father helps you make sense of His instructions like—love your enemies.
We celebrate our earthly fathers on Father’s Day. The importance of a father has been well studied in social science. The absence of a father has strong implications in the formation of a child, whether male or female. It is never optimal for a child to be raised without a father. It is so vital that God has specifically promised to be the Father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5). While we cannot overestimate the impact of fathers on earth, coming to know God as our Father and ourselves as His beloved Children is essential to our Christian life.
Paul tells us that our spirit’s cry out “Abba, Father” (Romans 8:15). Before Jesus, no one fully understood that God wanted us to become grounded in our identity that He is our Father, and we are His dearly beloved children. Perhaps the reason is that we could not fully embrace our heritage before Jesus ensured that for us by His death, burial and resurrection. We are simply missing out on the wonder of the Christian life lived in a fallen world when we do not fully claim our true identity as God’s sons and daughters.
All of us have a bio we use at work, our elevator speech (a 30-second description of yourself) or résumés. We sum up who we are on a regular basis. Our bios leave off what is truest about us. My bio lists my accomplishments in work and writing, but I like to add that who I really am is the daughter of and God and since He is the King of Kings, that makes me a princess. We who have put our faith in Jesus Christ are royalty.
Fathers’ Day is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the male’s most powerful role. He can use his influence for great good or great evil. It is also a day to recognize that “Our Father” is unlike any father we have ever known on earth. He is the Father who created us, loves us, saves us, and always does what is best for us. It is vital to our Christian life to understand our true Father. We must form a holy relationship with God as our Father to empower us to do all the good works our Father assigned to us and live our life pleasing Him as Jesus showed us how to live.
Whether you celebrate your good father, or forgive your foolish father, or remember your father who is no longer with you on Fathers’ Day, don’t miss the importance of forming a new relationship with God as the Father you always needed. Learn to walk with Him and think of Him as your Daddy who is always near.