Monday, June 20, 2022

Our Good, Good Father

 By: Joanne Viola


A father of the fatherless and a judge for the widows, Is God in His holy habitation. God makes a home for the lonely; He leads out the prisoners into prosperity, Only the rebellious dwell in a parched land.”
(Psalm 68:5–6, NASB)

They say a child’s impression of God comes from their father. All week I have been asking myself if this could possibly be true. So here are a few things my own dad conveyed to me …

  • Faithfulness. I am sure there had to be at least one time he wanted to walk out. But he never did. Or if he did, it had to be after us kids were in bed and we never knew because he returned before we ever woke in the morning.  He has been there every day of my life.
  • Sacrifice. I can remember the year he took a second job at Korvette’s Department Store. He worked in the toy department. That Christmas we had gifts piled high to the ceiling – Life, Booby Trap, Tipsy Turvy, new markers, a table hockey game and more. I am not sure, but I think he took the night job just for us to have Christmas!
  • Provision. My dad taught us to always be certain everyone had enough before taking a second helping. He taught us by example. He did not ever take his second helping unless everyone at the table was done. So guess who was last at the table?
  • Humor. My dad always gave us a good time and much laughter. There was not a crazy thing he would not do, or try, if it meant everyone would laugh. He is still making his great-granddaughters laugh. They know who to go to for a good time.
  • Compassion. They say grown men don’t cry. My dad cries for which I am so grateful. I have not cried alone in life.
  • A love for God’s Word. He loves to converse. So many good conversations about Scripture and life over the years.
  • Love. I have always known my dad loves me. Never doubted it. Why? He told us often. He showed it more.
  • Generosity. He gave to us. He gave to others. And continues to give.
  • He stood by his promises. His word was his word. Even the times he said we were going to bed when we finished dinner. Even if it was summer. Even when we heard all the kids in the neighborhood playing outside. Yes, even then.
  • He delights to delight us.  He loves to see us receive a surprise. I remember coming home to a new pot because he was concerned about my cooking in my old one. Enough said.
  • A love for simplicity. So many Saturday night rides to Nathan’s for a hot dog and arcades. There were also stops at White Castle for hamburgers, after church on Sunday nights. How many boxes were we able to fold and stuff into one hamburger box?

So it’s true!!! Absolutely true. My impression of my God was conveyed to me by my earthly dad. Not saying my dad was perfect, as he does have flaws (sorry Dad!) but then don’t we all? But I am grateful that he had more godly characteristics than flaws, the positive far outweighing the negative. And somehow he is has pointed me to these truths:

God is good.
All God does is for my good.
God is always faithful.
God will always protect me.
God’s Word is true.
God will delight me,
and takes delight IN me.
God loves me.
Every. Single. Day.
And …

Nathan’s hotdogs are the best :)

I have loved the teaching of Chuck Swindoll for years. I thought this was a beautiful prayer to share today for those who had good fathers, or those not as fortunate.

“Lord, You are good to give us fathers. Far too often it’s a difficult role and thankless job. Therefore, we pray that You would encourage all the men in that place today. Guard their hearts. Strengthen their resolve. Help them embrace the joy that comes with the rearing of their children.

We thank You for our own fathers. For those of us who had supportive, loving, and faithful fathers, we give You thanks. There is nothing like a good father—one who leads his family with love and grace—presenting a life of self-sacrificial love consistently to his children.

Father, we also pray today for those who haven’t a father nearby or didn’t have one like they would have wanted. We pray You would make them trusting people, to see that You are the Father of the fatherless. You’re able to take their deepest hurts and heal them. We pray You would use Your Word and Your people to help relieve some of that pain.

May this be a day in which we give honor to You God, our Father.”

In the name of Christ, we pray. Amen.

(Excerpted from The Prayers of Charles R. Swindoll, Volume 2, Copyright © 2012 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.)


 Photo by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash


 


1 comment:

  1. What a wonderful legacy you have! I appreciate Chuck Swindoll's prayer as well. Our earthly fathers, good or bad, can point us to our perfect heavenly Father.

    ReplyDelete

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