“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 1 John 3:1 ESV
The love of a father is a relative concept. What I mean is that each of us have had different experiences as it relates to our earthly fathers. Some of us have (or had) a loving, faithful, gentle father that had a positive impact on our lives. Others of us dread the memories of our ‘fathers’ due to abuse, absence, and hurtful events. As a result, your earthly experience will have a profound influence on your perspective of God the Father. But remember, your perception determines your reception.
Therefore, it is important as you develop a life of gratitude to allow the Scriptures to inform your view of God. Our earthly relationships are stained with hurts, wounds, and disappointments. But our third assumption must be that our God is a good Father. As Father, his love has created access for us to have a relationship with Him, the God of the universe, the creator of all things. He not only opens the door but literally gives us the key to His house. He doesn’t just welcome us as a guest, He adopts us into His family. We can enter confidently into His house and know it is also OUR house.
Today, we will focus on three functions that God the Father fulfills in our lives. First of all, He is our provider, He cares for us, and He is our protector.
God takes on the responsibility to provide for you. Matthew 6:24 says, “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” There really isn’t a comparison between our worth and the birds of the air. It is simply a statement that if God cares enough for birds to provide for them, how much more will He provide your needs. Be thankful you have a faithful provider.
Secondly, the Father cares for you. Again, these are similar actions as a friend but with a higher sense of responsibility. He is aware of your situation. He empathizes with your pain. He knows your hurt. He is never intimidated by your circumstances. He never leaves you, nor forsakes you - even if you take the position of a prodigal. He waits for you to return. 1 Peter 5:7 encourages us, “Cast all your care upon Him, because He cares for you.” (MEV)
Next, we can accept God as our protector. Have you watched the videos of the near disastrous moments when a father reaches out and stops a catastrophe from happening to one of his kids. It might be a child flying through the year after falling out of a swing or rescuing a toddler right before his brother runs over him with a mini-car. These amazing moments caught on video show the protection of earthly dads at work.
We would be more amazed if there was a reel we could sit down and watch expressing the multitude of times God the Father has protected us from harm. Danger we didn’t know existed. Car wrecks, near falls, business deals, relationship baffles, and on and on the video would play. Listen as the Psalmist artistically shares this truth about our heavenly Father:
1 I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? 2 My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. 3 He will not let your foot slip— he who watches over you will not slumber; 4 indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. 5 The LORD watches over you— the LORD is your shade at your right hand; 6 the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. 7 The LORD will keep you from all harm— he will watch over your life; 8 the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore. (Psalm 121:1-8)
Give thanks that you have a Faithful Father in Heaven. Be grateful that He is committed to providing for you and protecting you. Be thankful that He cares for you with an undying love. Stop right now and let him know how much you appreciate Him being a good, good Father.
A Gratitude Prayer:
“Daddy in heaven, thank you for your faithfulness. Thank you that you provide all my needs according to your riches in heaven. Thank you that you care about me, my hurts, my concerns, yes, everything that concerns me. And Father God, thank you for protecting me - even when I didn’t know I was in trouble. I am grateful that you call me your child and have given me access to Your throne!”
Just for fun watch this video on think about the many times, God has protected you!
Share a story in the comments below about a time when God watched over you.