Pray, then, in this way: 'Our Father who is in heaven, - Matthew 6:9a (NAS)
It was a cold snowy afternoon and Stella had got together with the Miller twins to do some browsing for clothes at the Teen Shop in the mall. After about an hour looking through rack after rack of the latest spring fashions they decided to head to the food court and get a bite to eat. After ordering some food they found an empty table and sat down to eat.
As they snacked on their fries, they started talking about all the cute boys they saw walking around and how great it would be to go on a date with some of them but since their dads had so many restrictions on any attempt they made to date, their conversation soon turn to complaining about their dads.
“My dad is so lame.” Stella complained, “And he looks like a Martian.” “Well, our dad is so lazy,” Mindy said next, “I wish he never existed.” “Yeah,” Cindy added, “He makes us do all the work and he never does anything.” “Well, my dad does do one thing,” Stella spoke next, “But I wish he didn't.” “What's that?” the twins asked in unison. “Ground me!” Stella answered.
“I wonder what it would be like if we could pick our dads.” Cindy said after gulping down a big bite of ice cream. “What a great idea sis!” Mindy told Cindy in reply. “Yeah,” Stella added and then they chatted back and forth for the next half hour on what kind of dad they would choose and how their dream dad would be rich, good looking, famous, important, never make them do anything they didn't want to do and never ever ground them.
The next thing the girls knew, a young lady pulled up a chair and sat down with them and asked “Are you sure you want a dad like that?” Looking at each other with puzzled faces, Stella finally piped up and asked “Who are you? And Who invited you to but in on our conversation.”
“My name,” the young lady said, “Is Rosita Roselli and I couldn't help over hearing you talking about your dream dad. Well, dream dads aren't that great.” “What would you know?” Mindy sneered at her. “My dad,” Rosita replied, “Is everything you dream of, He's rich, good looking, famous, and important and he never makes me do things and never grounds me because he's never there.”
“That's awesome.” Mindy said. “Can meet him?” Cindy added “Maybe we could trade” Stella tacked on and none of the girls noticed how sad Rosita was. “It's not so awesome.” Rosita said as she looked Mindy in the eye. “You always have to live perfectly, you always have to have a body guard, you can only go to schools full of snobs, you can't have real friends and if you even walk funny you get in trouble. I have to live as if my Dad is all that matters in the world and everything I say or do has to be perfect.” and than turning to Cindy she continued, “No, you can't meet him, I told you, he's never around and besides, you're not good enough.” then turning to Stella she finished by saying, “If you want, I'll gladly trade dads with you for I would much rather have a dad like yours.”
Through out the Bible you will find God being addressed by various names an attributes. He is God Almighty, He is I Am, He is a consuming fire, He is compassionate, He is a great and Awesome God, He is the Lord of Lords and God of gods, He is a righteous judge, and the list goes on. In the opening words of what is called the Lord’s prayer, Jesus turns our thoughts to God as our Heavenly Father
There are many reasons for wanting to address God as Father:
- It acknowledges Him as our Creator for He created us in His image
- It show we have a relationship with Him
- Because He treats us like a father
- Psalm 103:13 Just as a father has compassion on his children, So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him. (NAS)
- Proverbs 3:12 For the LORD corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights. (NLT)
There are more verses we could look at but lets go on to the heart of what it means to call God – Father.
In John 8 Jesus was talking to some Jews, Jews who were claiming to be descendants of Abraham, Jews who were claiming that Abraham was the father but what they claimed didn't match with what Jesus saw. "If you are Abraham's children, do the deeds of Abraham.” Jesus told them. On top of this, the Jews claimed the God was their father but Jesus told them their only father was the devil for it was the devil's desire they wished to fulfill, not Abraham's and not God's.
In calling God – Father one must be willing to behave as one of God's children. Look at these verse on how a child of God is to behave for when we call God – Father we are saying this is how I will behave.
- 1 Peter 1:17 Since you call on a Father who judges each man's work impartially, live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear. (NIV)
- Matthew 5:48 You must be perfect—just as your Father in heaven is perfect. (TEV)
- 1 John 3:10 This is how God’s children—and the Devil’s children—are made evident. Love’s Imperative Whoever does not do what is right is not of God, especially the one who does not love his brother. (HCSB)
- 1 Peter 1:14 Obey God because you are his children. Don't slip back into your old ways of doing evil; you didn't know any better then.(NLT)
1 John 3:1 says See how very much our heavenly Father loves us, for he allows us to be called his children...(NLT) Yet, as you can see, calling God your Heavenly Father requires more than just calling Him Father. Calling yourself His child requires more than just calling yourself His child - It requires you to live as His child. Are you ready to pray “Our Father in Heaven?”
Here's Something To Ponder
- Do you treat God as Father?
- Do you live as you're God's child?