Like Father, Like God

"Keep on asking, and you will be given what you ask for. Keep on looking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And the door is opened to everyone who knocks. You parents, if your children ask for a loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not! If you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him." (Matthew 7:7-11 NLV)

Someone has said, "Most people spend their lives avoiding God because it is a re-encounter with their own father who was nonbonding and non affirming." One of the main reasons people hold false perceptions of God is our tendency to project onto God the unloving characteristics of the people we look to in our natural lives. One psychologist found that this spiritual development of the God image is more of an emotional process than an intellectual one. She brings out the importance of family and other relationships to the development of what she calls one’s "private God." She says that, "No child arrives at the ‘house of God’ without his pet God under his arm." And for some of us the "pet God" we have tied on a leash to our hearts is not very nice, nor is it biblically accurate. This is because our negative images of God are often rooted in our emotional hurts and destructive patterns of relating to people that we carry with us from our past.

In contrast to the negative perceptions many people have about God, let me give you several positive character qualities of our Heavenly Father (which ought to be our goals as earthly fathers as well):

  • First, God is patient. You are the recipient of God’s time and concern. You are important to God and He desires to be personally involved in every aspect of your life.
  • Second, God is kind. God acts kindly and graciously on your behalf. God helps you and intervenes on your behalf. God loves you deeply and He wants to relate to you personally.
  • Third, God is giving. God gives to you. God supports and encourages you. God will give you what is best for you. He never deals in hand-me-downs or leftovers.
  • Fourth, God accepts you, regardless of what you have done or will do. God doesn’t demean you or reject you when you struggle, but understands and encourages you. Even when you completely fail or don’t perform up to your potential, God accepts you.
  • Fifth, God protects. You can be under His care and rest in His security through the grace of His Son, Jesus Christ.

The first Person of the Trinity is Father.  When you accept His work of grace on your behalf through faith in Jesus Christ, you are born into a new family with God as your perfect Father. As we approach a New Year, think on this great truth! No matter what your earthly father may have been like; your heavenly Father is perfect in every way. Run to Him!