Even if my father and mother abandon me, the LORD cares for me.Â Â Â Psalm 27:10 (HCSB)
Our God, from your sacred home you take care of orphans and protect widows. Â Â Psalm 68:5 (CEV)
â€œIf you had known me, you would have known the Father. But from now on, you do know him, and you have seen him.”Â Â Â John 14:7 (CEV)
For a commandment is a lamp, teaching is a light, and corrective instructions are the way to life.Â Â Â Proverbs 6:23 (HCSB)
And fathers, don’t stir up anger in your children, but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.Â Â Â Â Ephesians 6:4 (HCSB)
This week I have been meditating about â€œwhat is a father?â€. It is a good thing for me to meditate about this because I have had some â€œfather issuesâ€ in my life. God has taught me about what a father is and isn’t. I have grown in love for my own father as I have learned from God. I have also learned to forgive myself for my less than stellar parenting.
A father loves. His strength is in the integrity of his love. Whether life is in crisis or in sweet peace, a father’s love is an anchor, a haven for a child to count on. A father’s love is not suffocating but it is constant. A father’s love has the expectation of greatness but that because he is always supportive and encouraging.
A father is open to his children. He does not hide from them or avoid the difficult talks. No matter what his vocation in life, he is a teacher. He learns from Jesus and he teaches his children what he has learned. And he isn’t afraid to say, â€œI don’t know. Let’s go find the answer together.â€
A father’s discipline is consistent. It is tempered with equal parts love and wisdom. He never forgets to look for the opportunity to teach but he also is strong enough to say to his child, â€œI said ‘No’ because I love you and I know this is bestâ€. He allows his children to learn about consequences (like the prodigal son) but is joyful when his child learns the lesson and grows from it. A father is not a tyrant but his children know what is expected of them because their father has verbalized those expectations and lives them in his own life. A father teaches obedience by being obedient to God.
Many years ago when I became a parent, I had no clue what that meant. I wish I had known how much information was in the Bible about being a parent. Any subject that I am not clear or have questions about, I can pull out a concordance, study guide, or ask someone who has been studying themselves and find a beginning to learning what God says about the subject. Listening to my Creator and Lord is going to the Source and learning from the best.
Thank You, Father, for teaching me about who and what You are. Thank You for healing me and loving me without conditions. Thank You for being right here, always, and holding me close to Your heart. I love You. Amen.