As a father there are times in your life when you have many disappointments and many times when you are very proud of your children. The day the Lord blessed me with the birth of my children, I stood there holding them overwhelmed with emotion at this little life I held in my hands. I knew that there was a great responsibility that I had as a father to raise each of them in the ways of the Lord and that they would be looking to me for direction, help, and for acknowledgment. As they grew, I did my best to instill in them the principles of the Word of God by memorizing and meditating on Scripture, making sure that we were all in church as a family, praying together as a family, and that we ministered together.
As my children grew, each one started to get involved in ministry. Both my daughters played instruments in the praise team and sang specials and in the choir. My son from the time he was in Kindergarten to adulthood would spend time telling his mother and I that he was going to either be a pastor or a chaplain in the Army. He would spend his free time during the week going on “Expeditions” in the woods behind our house discovering new lands and new worlds. He and his friend built a fort in the woods that is still standing to this day. On Sunday’s he would dress in his suit and rush over to the church to make sure that he was there early with me. He wanted to stand at the door to greet everyone that walked in and welcome them to worship service. After the service, he would stand at the door to shake everyone’s hand and wish them a great week and give the “ladies” a hug. Everyone told him that he was my associate.
Well, as an adult he joined the Ohio Army National Guard. I think he’s the only person that has gone through basic training who would go back and do it all over again. He loves Army life. With each phase of his career in the Army I’ve been able to be there. There is something that brings me to tears as I see him marching, standing in patriotic duty to his country, but knowing that he is also standing in honor and duty to the Lord and his faith and relationship to God. I stand there thinking how “proud” I am of him and how much he has grown from that little baby that I held in my arms in that hospital the day he was born. Have there been rough times in his life? Have there been times when I’ve been disappointed with him? Absolutely! However, that hasn’t stopped my love for him and knowing that love conquers all things.
When I think about that I can’t help be reminded how much our Heavenly Father loves us. We are all on a battle field. We are in one of two armies. We are either in the Lord’s army fighting Satan and his demonic hosts, or we’re in Satan’s army fighting the Lord. That choice is ours. However, there’s a Father who loves us more than we can ever know. There’s a Father who knit us together in our mother’s womb. There’s a Father who knows all about us. There’s a Father who knows our deepest thoughts. There’s a Father who will stand for us, protect us, provide for us, and take care of us. The commander of the other army is not there to provide those things. He’s out to destroy all that you stand for. He’s out to destroy you, enslave you, keep you in chains. Your Heavenly Father sent His Son so that you can be free. As Jesus died on the cross, was placed in the tomb, God the Father stood and said, “Not today. You can’t have Him. He’s coming out.” Christ rose again and because of the “proud Father” we now have eternal life through Jesus Christ. We have freedom through Jesus Christ. We have something to fight with, fight for, and can defeat the enemy. How do I know? Christ has given me that authority. Christ now lives in me and because He lives in me, I have overcome and will overcome. I have a proud Father who loves through my disappointing times, and helps me be the man that I need to be.
He can and will help you as well. Will you make your Father proud? Will you accept His Son today? Jesus stands waiting with arms open wide. You are one of God’s children and He longs for you to come home.