I have come into a lot of growth over the last couple of years. Learning more about God and growing in my faith in Jesus Christ. One of the biggest things I have grown into is learning about God as my Father, my true Father. My life has gone through a series of twists and turns in the fathering I received. Events growing up led to a mix of seeing my earthly dad as a great man, while at the same time coming to terms recently that I was never fully initiated as man nor received the full validation I needed and that every boy needs coming into manhood. I married early and pulled away from the family. As I neared my 30s, things began to change in how our relationship grew stronger. We spent some great times just hanging out and talking. Then all of a sudden, he was gone. I’ve shared this on many times, but it ripped my heart out losing him the way we did.
So what to do with all of this. Not having my dad any longer I was lost. I grew in my faith and it began to have a lasting effect on my life and my family. I looked to God as my father now and I have wanted to grow in knowing him. Something changed in me recently though while at Wild At Heart. Before, I was looking to God as a backup father. My dad, gone, so who do I turn to. Ephesians 1 tells us that God is the originator though. He adopted us into his family as sons, as his sons and daughters. Verse 4 says, “Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ.” He is not the backup plan. He was my Father before I was created and has always been, and will always be. God desires to bring us into Sonship with Him. To allow him to Father us.
Morgan Snyder from the Ransomed Heart team shared some pretty remarkable things about this and has some awesome audio about Sonship on the Ransomed Heart site. One thing He mentioned is that God is orchestrating a rescue of us. Our earthly dad was meant to point us to the father, but never sufficient to take the Father’s place. This is just a small snippet, but it’s pretty profound. The invitation of the Father is to be his son. He wants to Father us.
What does this do for our hearts and our lives when we allow God to father us? One thing I can say for sure is that you feel alive. Aside from addressing my wounds, the thing that made me most alive in my journey at Wild At Heart was truly learning that I was God’s son and that he believed in me as a man. I heard one of the guys say that it allows us to be young again. I believe this to be true. In coming alive, I feel like I can do anything again and allowing God to Father me is leading me in a pretty awesome direction. He’s initiating me into adventures and what feels like a new beginning. I noticed my overall demeanor has changed. I think it brings us to a point to where we just enjoy life.
We need to seek Sonship and seek God to Father us each day. Know that we are our Father’s son and he loves us and believes in us. Whether or not you had a good relationship with your earthly dad, coming to God as the Father is on a whole new level. He has a name and identity for us. Spend time in prayer with him and get to know him for who he is and he will tell you who you are. I’m paraphrasing, but George McDonald said that it’s better to not know the Father than to have learned him wrong.
Being a son was a the center of Jesus’s life. He sought the Father for everything he did. He came to do the will of the Father and new he was the apple of his Father’s eye. He was one with Him In John 14, Philip asked Jesus to show them the Father. Jesus replied that anyone who has seen him has seen the Father. They are one. We are the image bearers of God and God desires us to be drawn into Sonship with him as well. In John 17, Jesus’s invitation is to know the Father through Christ. This is the path to eternal life. In Romans 8 Paul says that all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead you received a spirit of sonship.
The invitation is right there. God desires to Father us. To bring us close to him as his sons. God has rigged the world so that it does not work, apart from him. Without him, things fall apart. With God, there is life through Jesus. The enemy has used many tools to draw us away from this. In our wounds with our earthly dads or other men in our lives. The enemy hates the father son connection and is out to destroy it. Look to the Father though and he will reveal the Truth to you. Look in his Word and all he has shared. He desires for us to be drawn to him as sons.
As you grow in Sonship and I am still growing, you’ll be amazed at the ways God will Father you. He will come at you directly. He will also use other people in your lives to Father you. I have definitely found this to be true in the guys I’ve connected with and the conversations I’ve been able to share with others. I may not have recognized it all before, it God’s definitely showing it to me now. It’s pretty amazing to see. There’s a place for us all in the fellowship of man if we open our hearts to the Father and let him in.