The Influence of the Earthly Father

I don’t know why this happens but it is very good when it does.  God gives me something to say in the everyday occurrences of life.  Little miracles are so fine.

Watching TV with my wife last night we saw a hospital commercial.  The dad in the commercial was dressing up in a tuxedo and it looked like he was going out on the town.

He wasn’t.

He was going to another room in his house to have tea with his daughter.

Susan commented on the commercial, “I wish I had a father who would do something like that for me.  How unrealistic.”  I have heard this disappointment before.  I am not going to elaborate on her dear departed dad but I use this prelude to introduce the idea of how do you see your heavenly father?

Often through the lens of your earthly father.

There are helpful words to be found on the “Healing Journey” website:  “If you had a bad relationship with your dad you will likely have a distorted view of fathers in general and that will negatively influence your other relationships. Age gender, income, and social status are irrelevant; a poor relationship with your father will influence your thinking, your behavior, your emotions, and most importantly your relationship with your Heavenly Father. A poor relationship with your father will distort the way you view everything in your life. It will affect the way you view authority figures, the way you view all men, and it will affect your marriage. A father either works to build his child up or he tears his child down. There is no such thing as a neutral relationship with a father.”

How does this relate to AHA?  The elder son wants to see his father as a punisher, a person who will exact retribution.  The younger brother broke many rules and now the older son expects the father to be mad.  After all, he has stayed home with dad and worked hard and has not received any reward.  But what happens?  The young son comes home and gets welcomed!  What has happened!  Dad has showed a side that does not fit the pattern of behavior.  The elder son is hurt and angry.

Again, from the “Healing Journey Website”:

“There is a direct correlation between the relationship you had with your father and the relationship you have with your Heavenly Father. If you found your father to be negative, distant, uninterested in you, unavailable for your emotional needs, you will tend to perceive your Heavenly Father the same way. As long as you continue to see your Heavenly Father in a distorted way you will not be able to be all that God has designed for you to be. You limit yourself and your relationship with God by your incorrect perceptions.”

The older son sees the Heavenly Father as an unforgiving God.

Boy does he get the surprise of his life as he gets the message of his life.  God is not unforgiving [ shown through the actions of his earthly father].

In fact, God is overjoyed at the return of the prodigal [again, the actions of his earthly father].

Pastor Idleman wants  us see that the “new Dad” is the REAL DAD.  The prodigal has not returned to his old home of punishment, retribution and slavery.  He has returned to a home of mercy, forgiveness and freedom.

What a relief for the prodigal.

It happened because he made a move…[Luke 15: verse 20 “He got up and went to his father”].

AHA  has been all about us making our move.

Let’s wake up to who and what we are:  Awakening.

Let’s be honest about who we are, what we are and our problems:  Honesty

Let’s take action [get up and go to the Father]:  Action

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