By Rick Wood
Pastor, Pursuit Christian Fellowship, ThePursuitDallas.com
Father’s Day is upon us in just a few days and I’m pretty sure that the spending won’t change…year after year there has been more spending for Mother’s Day than there has been for Father’s Day. As a matter of fact, I don’t think there has ever been a year in which there was more spending on fathers than for mothers. I’m a father of three children and I truly enjoy being one! It has nothing to do with how much my children spend on me (although I’ve been hinting to them to get me a new car), but I enjoy watching them grow up and become great assets to society. I must admit that I’m still learning how to be a father, and more importantly a dad…it’s a lifelong lesson.
Whenever it comes to learning how to be a father, the best model is found in our Heavenly Father. The Bible depicts a time when Jesus was about to experience a defining moment in His life, and God the Father was present during that moment. This must have been a very important defining moment because it was recorded in all three synoptic Gospels. But it was during this moment that God the Father said something to His Son Jesus that was very impactful. The scriptures reveal in Luke 3:22b the Father’s words: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” Very short and simple, but extremely powerful.
When I read this, I learn how to not just be a father, but to be a dad. Here we see our Heavenly Father speaking to His Son with encouraging words. Some people may not think much of this, but it is not uncommon in society today for parents, especially fathers, to be so busy that they barely have time for their children. But the example of God is clearly seen as He not only shows up for Jesus’s defining moment, but He also speaks to Him and tells Him that He (Jesus) is His Son. Can I ask you a question? When was the last time you had a meaningful talk with your child where you’ve imparted encouraging words into their life? For most of us, it’s probably been a very long time.
But not only that, there’s a deeper meaning to the words of God the Father to His Son Jesus. Not only is the Father present, but He acknowledges His Son. He states, “You are my Son…” You may think these words don’t mean much, but they do. The Father was making a verbal acknowledgement of His Son. Have you ever thought about how it makes your child(ren) feel when they verbally hear your loving acknowledgement of them? It provides them with a sense of security in knowing that they are not just yours biologically, but intimately.
From a biblical perspective, calling someone a ‘son’ had multiple meanings. One of the meanings is identified when God installed a king on the throne. When this was done, God called the king His son. An example of this is found in 2 Samuel 7:14a where God speaks to David about his son Solomon and says, “I will be his father, and he will be my son.” God the Father was not the biological father of Solomon, but God’s words indicate that Solomon would enjoy a father/son relationship with God. This was an intimate loving relationship that God promised He would have with Solomon.
It’s a wonderful thing when fathers ‘enthrone’ their children through loving verbal acknowledgement and calling them their sons and daughters…it’s as if we lift them up and declare God’s blessings and favor in their lives. This is the difference between a father and a dad. So, the very next time you see your child(ren), hug them, love on them and tell them that they’re yours. No matter what your relationship with your child(ren) is at this moment, you can begin the transition from father to dad right now…what’s stopping you?
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