To The Fathers
We are going
to briefly look at several scriptures about fathers this morning as we
celebrate Father’s Day. I do not know all of you well enough to have known all
of the fathers of those here this morning. I pray everyone here today, as well
as those sharing on Facebook, has many good memories of your earthly fathers.
The verses we looked at to begin with this morning talk of the importance of
both our fathers and mothers. God’s perfect plan is for children to have both
an involved mother and father in our lives. Unfortunately, that is not always
the case and those children without truly struggle. More often than not, if
there is a single parent in the home, it is normally the mother who must take
on all the responsibility for raising the children. In those cases, if the
mother has a relationship with the Lord, she knows there is help available. In
2 Corinthians 6:18 it says, “I will be a father to you and you will be my sons
and daughters says the Lord Almighty.” God will be there to encourage everyone,
especially in times of specific need.
As I look
out at those in the sanctuary, I see many fathers this morning.
I have been
in situations that have allowed me to see some of you showing love and support
to your children. With others I just have not had that same experience. I feel
confident, though, every father here this morning has tried your best to raise
the children God has blessed you with. There is no perfect earthly father in
spite of our best efforts. God the Father will fill in the gaps we may leave.
If you have read some of the life stories of the great men of the Old Testament,
you will find virtually every single one has their strong points and every
single one has places where they fall short when it comes to parenting. Let us
look at what a father’s responsibility is according to scripture.
13:1 says a wise son heeds his father’s instruction. Before we look at any more
verses, let us all understand while it may mention a father’s son it is also
just as important for the daughters to learn from their father as well.
Proverbs 15:5 says, “A fool spurns his father’s discipline.” In other words,
when you need correction, accept it and learn from it as well as the instruction
we receive. And continuing on that theme, Hebrews even tells fathers, “You must
be willing to discipline your children when it is necessary for their good.”
These verses show how God the Father and our earthly fathers will at times need
to discipline us for our own good. Hebrews 12:5-11 says, “And you have
forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons. My son, do not
make light of the Lord’s discipline and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
because the Lord disciplines those he loves and he punishes everyone he accepts
as a son. Endure hardship as discipline, God is treating you as sons. For what
son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined, and everyone
undergoes discipline, then you are illegitimate children and not true sons.
Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respect them
for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live!
Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best, but God
disciplines us for our own good, that we may share in his holiness. No
discipline seems pleasant at the time but painful. Later on, however, it
produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained
Many of us
here this morning have had our earthly father already pass on ahead of us. From a personal standpoint, this is the first
Father’s Day my dad is not alive to wish a Happy Father’s Day. This is also
true of the Arnold Schultz family and many more in the Cerro Gordo area and
beyond. At the same time, I once again look out here in the sanctuary and see
many fathers here this morning and others who I am sure are sharing with us on
Facebook as well.
As we have
read in the verses we looked at this morning, fathers have important jobs to
do. It does not matter how old or how young a father might be. God has work for
us to do. And be assured for those who have had little involvement from an
earthly father, God the Father is there for you. As we celebrate this day, I
ask each of you to think of something that made your dad special to you. We
should never forget. We also have a heavenly Father. We should take some time
to give a special thank you to our Heavenly Father as well. To the fathers here
in the sanctuary and those watching, thank you for all you have done in the
past and continue to do in the present. We children at times do not say it
often enough but we do appreciate how you make a difference in our lives. That
goes for you grandfathers and great grandfathers as well. Keep doing what God
is calling you to do and that is to be a father.
Have a great
Father’s Day! Whether we always see it or not, your children, grandchildren and
in some cases great grandchildren need you and are watching and listening. God
bless you all!