There are many ways of viewing God. I think many Christians look at God as a Father when things are going well and then when we do something bad, we expect Him to lash out at us with a lightning bolt. Not because we actually think God is like that. Deep down, we know He isn’t. But our limited human minds are concerned first with our own insecurity and we let that tint our view of God as well. God is our Father all the time.
When I was at high school, we had assembly every day, and we had to start every assembly by saying the Lord’s Prayer. So I know it well. But for some reason, my view of God as a Father never went beyond the first line. From the second line onwards, God became some sort of judge who was giving us bread and delivering us from evil as He saw fit, with a bang of the hammer. I asked God today to give me a revelation of Him as a Father, so I can think of Him like that all the time, and the Lord’s Prayer is what He pointed me to:
Our Father in heaven
Well that part is obvious, God is our Father in heaven.
Holy is Your Name
This is really all about God as our Father. Just like you are given the surname of your earthly father when you are born, and you go around bearing that name, so Christians go around bearing the Name of God. Just as the kind of child you are and the kind of adult you become is a reflection of the parents whose name you bear, so the love you show to people is a reflection of who God is. It’s vital that we glorify His Name through our actions as well as our words, and don’t tarnish it.
Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven
God’s Kingdom is a family business. He is the Father, the shop owner, however you want to look at it. We’re the kids who have been given the responsibility to look after the people who come in to the shop and to bring many more people in to the shop. But the best part is that we’re not selling anything! Salvation is free. And one day there’s gonna be a new earth and Jesus is gonna inherit the family business :)
Give us today our daily bread
“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” – Matthew 7:9-11
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us
God is able to forgive us for anything we do wrong, that’s why Jesus came to die on our behalf and take the penalty for those things. And like any good father, God hates to see His children arguing with each other and not forgiving each other. Just like when you were a kid and your Mum or Dad made you say sorry to your brothers and sisters and learn to forgive each other, we should treat God’s children the same way.
Lead us not into temptation, deliver us from evil
I don’t know how many movies you’ve seen where dads or father figures will do anything to protect their kids, but I’ve seen many, perhaps the most dramatic and moving of which is Taken, starring Liam Neeson. A fantastically insightful friend of mine pointed out how the incredible love that the main character has for his daughter that he will do anything to rescue her is a fantastic reflection of God’s love for us! I highly recommend watching Taken, so you can get a sense of this for yourself (if you’re old enough, of course) :)
God is so the best Dad ever!!! More capable of protecting His family than Jack Ryan, and with none of the bumbling of Homer Simpson, I can’t imagine having a better Dad!