When one of us kids would do something wrong or just off the wall, I can remember one of Dad’s favorite sayings, “Do you have brains God gave a goose?” This phrase still makes me laugh and I even used it with my girls a few times while they grew up. Trust me; we knew when Dad was angry; and I’m not suggesting he was perfect; as none of us are. But he was an amazing example of what a father should be. What sticks in my memory the most about his discipline is that he handled situations in a very loving way. There were times he had to discipline us with a belt; but he always did it with love. One of his ways of disciplining were the times he would just talk to us about what we did wrong; give us fatherly advice (very sternly) and ultimately give us another chance; because everyone makes mistakes. His only hope was that we learned from the mistake and not repeat it.
I spent a lot of time with Dad; especially when I was young; watching while he fixed the family cars; going to the store; sitting around just chatting; you name it! I loved being with my Dad and I loved our father-daughter relationship. My Dad was my hero! One thing was for sure; whenever I was with him, I felt loved & protected. Even when he wasn’t physically near, he was only a phone call away. I never had to worry about anyone hurting me because I knew without doubt, if within my Dad’s human ability, he would never let it happen. I can say with certainty that Dad would have given up his own life to protect me or anyone else in our family. Dad was a giver and he especially loved giving to his children. If he made a promise, he stood by it and made it happen. I trusted my Dad. He never gave me reason not to trust him. I knew he loved me; I knew he would meet all the necessary needs in my life and more. I knew I was protected. He blessed me even when I didn’t deserve it. He loved me simply because I was his daughter and I didn’t have to earn his love. I was proud when other’s said I resembled my Dad; and some even thought I walked like him. To me, Dad was an amazing father!
When I think about my relationship with my heavenly Father, I am astonished at the pattern I see between my Dad and Him. Once I made the decision to accept Jesus as my Lord and Savior, I was barely out of the pit filled with miry muck. Yet, He accepted me just as I came to Him; covered in filth; reeking with a horrendous stench and to be honest; I was drenched in sin. And even though He didn’t approve of the sin in my life, He loved me despite it all. He reminded me that He loved me enough to give up His life for me so that my sins could be forgiven. My sins were forgiven the moment I accepted Him into my heart. He promised that He would never leave me or disown me. Hebrews 13:5-6 NKJV However, like my Dad, the Lord also said He would discipline me when it was necessary because He wanted me to share in His holiness. God only corrects those He loves. Hebrews 12:4-13 NIV
Throughout my walk with Him, there has never been a time where He failed me nor has His word proven void. Even though He hasn’t always given me what I want; He has been quick to supply my need. And just like my Dad, He knows what is best for me and He loves me enough to tell me no when I ask for something that may not be good for me. I don’t always understand His decisions or direction; but I know without doubt, He will not steer me down the wrong road. Even when I’ve experienced adversity, discouragement or testing contrary to His word, He is quick to speak to me, thru His Holy Spirit, to turn me away from the enticements of this world and get my eyes fixed back on Him. And at times when I’ve messed up and did things my own way; His love covered a multitude of my disobedience to His direction. His grace & mercy have overshadowed me more numerous times I can recall and more than I ever deserved. As I strive to serve the Lord, my hope is that when others look at me, I resemble my Heavenly Father more & more each day, with each step I take in my walk with Him!
You see, the truth is; He considers me His daughter and He loves me more than anyone else could; including my Dad. Wow! When I consider how much my Dad loved me; it helps me to accept my Heavenly Father’s love like none other.
Maybe you never had a close relationship with your earthly Dad. And all though I could never understand the depth of your pain, let me encourage you to draw near to your heavenly Father. He loves you & desires a close relationship with you. If you’re Dad has already passed away or just not a part of your life for one reason or another, maybe today is difficult for you! The Lord wants you to remember that He is a Father to the fatherless!
“Sing to God, sing in praise of His name, extol Him who rides on the clouds; rejoice before Him — His name is the Lord. A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy dwelling.” Psalm 68-4-5 NIV
Thank you, Heavenly Father! You are indeed the most AMAZING FATHER!
Happy Father’s Day!
I love you!