Our Mother Who Art in Heaven?
“I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty. 2 Corinthians 6:18
In the last half of the 20th Century we began to hear with increasing frequency God called “She, as the feminist movement gained more and more adherents, and some of them thought the “shock value of publically feminizing the name of God fulfilled a missing element of some sort or other. This “novel idea corresponded with the denigration of human fathers characterized as wimpy, incompetent stumblebums in television programs, commercials, movies, novels and the like. It is often argued that God is a Spirit and has no specific sex, and that even a few verses in Scripture describe him as exercising the compassion or characteristics of a mother toward us. Nevertheless, the overwhelming self-revelation of God in Scripture is His choice to reveal Himself as Father; the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of every believer, and the archetype of what “father is. God, in Himself, defines what “father means. Every father whether he is a poor example or an exemplary one derives his name from the infinite, eternal, holy and perfect Father in heaven.
C.S. Lewis who was himself so profoundly influenced by the great Christian writer and novelist, George MacDonald, wrote of him: “An almost perfect relationship with his father was the earthly root of all his wisdom. From his own father, he said, he first learned that Fatherhood must be at the core of the universe. He was thus prepared in an unusual way to teach that religion in which the relation of Father and Son is of all relations the most central. Jesus said, “For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother. (Matthew 12:50) But no one supplants His relationship with the Father, the relationship which exists eternally with the Father and the Son; the relationship which by His atonement is made possible for us to enjoy forever with His Father and ours as adopted sons and daughters.
Too many have had poor earthly examples of what a father is, and it has had its debilitating impact upon their lives. Others have had an example not unlike George MacDonald’s and their entire life has been rewarded by it. And many more find their experience somewhere in between the two. The essential lesson, however, is this: We must all find our ultimate fulfillment of fatherhood and father-child relationship in the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. A poor father should send you fleeing all the sooner to the arms and heart of your heavenly Father, whose law and expressed will is written on every heart to spurn or embrace through grace. On the other hand a good father will point you in the direction of the One who taught him what being a good father means. This is what my earthly father did for me. And I am eternally grateful and love him for it.
This Father’s Day, no matter what your circumstance, honor your earthly father if you are able. (Ephesians 6:2) But do not allow a poor father-child relationship keep you from the most important Father-child relationship of all. Only your eternal Father is able to make all things new. He “restores the years the locusts have eaten. (Joel 2:25) Only He can truly satisfy the deepest need to find fulfillment and love in a Father. Few children have expressed as much love and respect for their father as Joseph did toward Jacob, who many would justly argue did not deserve it. But if you follow the history of Joseph, it is his relationship with his heavenly Father that made him one of the most incredible leaders in history. That is the relationship with a Father that you ought to crave and earnestly seek above all else.
“Abba, Father, draw me to Yourself, and fulfill all the need you created in me to be fathered. And may I be such a father to my own children, and compellingly guide them to You.
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