God the Father
“The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17 (NIV)
My friend told me that when she was a little girl, she and her siblings loved listening to stories and having great fun with their mother, especially at bedtime. Her father, by contrast, was distant, aloof and self-absorbed. She generalised from this that all fathers were emotionally cold, and that only mothers loved and delighted in their children. Imagine her surprise when she was invited to spend the night at her friend’s house, and her friend’s dad jumped on the bed with an armful of books, and full of fun and laughter, read them story after story. Wow! There were dads who actually enjoyed their children. Her understanding of fatherhood changed forever.
Perhaps some of us need our understanding of God’s fatherhood changed too. Instead of starting with our ideas of fatherhood and projecting them onto God, we need to listen to scripture and the Holy Spirit, and see God the Father in the face of Christ Jesus:
For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6)
It is Christ who shows us what the Father is really like. We see his attributes portrayed in the Gospels, through Christ’s words and actions. There we see on display his wonderful love, compassion, gentleness, steadfastness, courage, and holiness.
Let Christ then teach us what the Father is really like.
Our heavenly Father, your word speaks to us of your loving care and delight in us. May we also learn to delight in you, Amen.
Study by Christina Campbell
About the writer:
Christina Campbell attends the Glasgow congregation of Grace Communion International where she is a speaker and Bible Study facilitator.
St Stevens Presbytery
260 Bath Street
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