Saturday, 15 June 2013

Happy Father's Day 2013

Hello All,
People generally lament the fact that Father’s Day is usually regarded as an anti-climax after the celebration of Mother’s Day.
Mothers are showered with many lovely gifts but fathers would perhaps receive a gift or two.
Maybe one of the reasons is the difficulty that children face in selecting a gift from a very narrow and limited range of presents for men.
I personally find it a challenging task when it comes to choosing a gift for my father.
After having exhausted the choices of a branded wallet for his birthday, a classic wrist watch for Christmas and a shirt for another birthday, I am not left with many alternatives since he possesses no interest in sports and neither is he a technologically savvy person.
 When all is said and done, we know in our hearts that we do love our fathers.
But most importantly, let us always remember that our Heavenly Father loves us infinitely more than our earthly fathers are capable of.
Happy Father's Day 2013
By Joanne Liaw Sook Ling (14th June 2013)

My simple finite mind could never comprehend
The Heavenly Father's great love for sinful man
He sacrificed his precious only Son, Jesus
To justify and sanctify sinners like us

My heart overflows with abundant thankfulness
Because our Heavenly Father has chosen us
Before he laid down the foundations of the earth
He has called us as his children before our birth

Let us thank him for the gift of earthly fathers
Who fulfill their role as protectors and leaders
As children, may we seek as to love and honour them
For they've been set o'er us by our Father in heav'n

Points for Reflection:
But when the fullness of time had come, God [Heavenly Father] sent forth his Son [Jesus Christ], born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. (Galatians 4:4-5)
·         For those of us who have put our trust in Jesus Christ, God has adopted us as his beloved children.
·         God has redeemed us from the law. The law refers to God’s holy law in the Old Testament that was written long before the coming of Jesus into the world. The law makes us aware of our sinfulness and the punishment for sin but it is unable to save sinners like us. We are saved because God the Father willingly sacrificed his dearly beloved Son, Jesus Christ, to take the penalty of our sin.
·         Have you become a child of God? If you are not a child of God then you are sadly a child of the Evil One and your eternal destiny after death is judgment in hell. God is calling out to you to come into his wonderful Kingdom as his precious little child.

And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God. (Galatians 4:6-7)
·         If you are a child of God, then you are an heir of God’s inheritance which is eternal life in heaven. This is a treasure which is so much more valuable than the fleeting wealth of this world.
·         As a child of God, you have the privilege of addressing your Heavenly Father in a personal way as your ‘Abba Father’. He is not an impersonal God who looks down condescendingly on us but he is our Heavenly Father who loves us and his ears are always open to our cries and prayers.
·         Have you taken this wonderful privilege as God’s child for granted? Why don’t you spend some time thanking God for his wonderful love to us? Do pray for those who are still in the darkness and use the opportunities that you have to bring the gospel to them.

Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)
·         It is one thing to discipline your children for their good but it is another issue to vent your anger and frustrations on them.
·         Have you been guilty of being verbally and even physically harsh with your children? If so, maybe it is a good time to tell God that you are sorry and pray that you will be able to lovingly discipline your children just as our Heavenly Father lovingly disciplines us when we do wrong.
·         Have you been bringing up your children in the ways of the Lord? You might be a loving and responsible father but you should not neglect to instill the love for God’s Word into hearts of your children.
·         If you have been instilling godly values into your children then allow me to take this opportunity to commend you highly for your endeavours and exhort you to continue doing so.

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.  “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” (Ephesians 6:1-3)
·         There are some of us who are very attached to our fathers and they are like a friend to us.
·         There are others who know in their hearts that they have good fathers but are often irritated with their fathers’ idiosyncrasies.
·         God commands us to honour our fathers; so no matter how annoyed we might get with them, let us pray for God to grant us patience in the way we relate to them.
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant (1 Corinthians 13:4)
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son [Jesus Christ] into the world, so that we might live through him. (1 John 4:7-9)

·         There may be some whose fathers have sadly passed away. Even with the passing times, the pain of loss is still evident. There are still others who have suffered under the hands of abusive fathers. In the absence of loving earthly fathers, we can take comfort in the fact that God has not left us as orphans but he has adopted us as his beloved children.