Cross Words: Knowing God as Father

By Isaiah Pauley

I’m getting married in less than five months, and as a young man, I’ve felt the pressure to become independent faster than I had originally planned. Each day reminds me of how dependent I have always been on my dad. As a child, I never worried about going hungry. I never worried about losing my home. I never experienced the electricity or water being shut off. But now that I’m paying most of my own bills and looking for a home of my own, the idea of dependency comes to mind.

This season is teaching me to appreciate my earthly father’s provision. But it’s also teaching me to trust my heavenly Father’s provision. It has proved to be a difficult journey, but as I was studying this past week, I was struck by the reality of God being my Father.

Jesus says, “‘If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!’” (Matt. 7:11 ESV).

I guess what I’m saying is that my Father will take care of me. He will provide all I need to live the life He has called me to live. And it gives me peace. After all, He has adopted me into His family.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will” (Eph. 1:3-5 ESV).

God has adopted me as His son. And it amazes me to consider the beauty of this truth. There is nothing about me that should attract Him. There is nothing I have done to deserve His love. But through Christ, I can know Him as Father. And if He is my Father, I can trust Him to provide. I can trust Him to love me, care for me, and never leave my side.

I love what Jesus says, “‘But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, “What shall we eat?” or “What shall we drink?” or “What shall we wear?” For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you’” (Matt. 6:30-33 ESV).

I just find myself grateful for a Father who loves me enough to adopt me as His own and provide all I need to serve Him faithfully.

Do you know God as your Father? Or, when you think of God, do you think of someone who is unconcerned with the daily affairs of your life?

If you don’t know God as Father, there is hope. You can know Him that way. But only through Christ.

“In him [Christ] we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire procession of it, to the praise of his glory” (Eph. 1:11-14 ESV).

You see, only in Christ do we find the joy of knowing God as Father. And when we come to Christ with a repentant heart, willing to surrender our lives to Him, we find a relationship more beautiful than anything this world has to offer.

And, as Paul writes in Ephesians, those who know God as Father have an inheritance. We are co-heirs with Christ (see Rom. 8:17). We are under His care, and we have nothing to fear.

I hope you can join me in thanking God for being such a great Father. Both now and forever.

By Isaiah Pauley

Isaiah Pauley is the Minister of Worship for Faith Baptist Church in Mason, W.Va. Find more at Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.

Isaiah Pauley is the Minister of Worship for Faith Baptist Church in Mason, W.Va. Find more at Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.