And His name shall be called Everlasting Father! When God promised to send a Messiah, He instructed Isaiah to describe the Messiah using four very important names. These names would reveal His character, show us how He would relate to us, and tell us what kind of Savior He would be. This prophecy from Isaiah is found in Isaiah 9:6…
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Just the mention of Jesus being our “father” makes this very personal and begins to trigger all sorts of images, emotions, and memories within us. For those with a great relationship with their dad, it brings up fond memories of a father that is supportive and encouraging. But for others, some of their most painful memories in life stem from the relationship they have with an absentee or abusive father.
The way we view our earthly father impacts how we see God, our Everlasting Father. The reason many people are not able to see God clearly is because whatever we think of our earthly father tends to be projected onto our Everlasting Father. Even the best dads in the world are imperfect and make their fair share of mistakes. That’s why it is dangerous to view our Everlasting Father through the lens of our earthly father.
The reason many people are not able to see God clearly is because the way we view our earthly father impacts how we see our Everlasting Father.Tweet
When we view our Everlasting Father through the lens of our earthly father…we may see a father who’s hard to please. When we bring that perspective into our relationship with Jesus, we won’t really believe that God is truly satisfied with us. And no matter what we do, we have this nagging suspicion that we haven’t done enough to please Him. We often think that God would be happier with us if we were a better Christian; a better witness; a better spouse; a better parent. We constantly compare ourselves to others and say, “If I were like him or her, I bet God would be happy with me”. And we spend our lives thinking we have to do things to get God to love us.
When we view our Everlasting Father through the lens of our earthly father…we may see a father who’s temperamental. If we view God as temperamental, we will have a hard time trusting Him. I mean, how can you trust a God that could be set off by the smallest thing that you do? What if He happens to be in a bad mood when something goes wrong in your life? When we view God this way, we spend our lives trying to figure out what to do to stay on His good side.
When we view our Everlasting Father through the lens of our earthly father…we may see a father who’s distant. If we view God as distant, it will drive us away from dependence on Him. We will begin to think that it is impossible to have a personal relationship with God. Pray will seem like it’s a waste of time because God’s not going to listen anyway. We will not want to depend on Him because we’re afraid God’s not going to be there through thick and thin.
Instead of viewing our Everlasting Father through the lens of our earthly father, let’s look at Him through the lens of Scripture. Because when we do, we are going to see an Everlasting Father that perhaps we’ve never seen before.
“The LORD is merciful and gracious (compassionate),
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.” (Psalm 103:8)
Our Everlasting Father is compassionate. He is slow to anger. And He is abounding in love.
One of the most liberating moments in my life is when I realized that there is NOTHING I can do to earn God’s love. He love us unconditionally and there’s nothing we can do about it.
BUT some of us are still trying to earn God’s love. We go to church, we read our Bible, we pray…not because we are overwhelmed with the grace of God in our life, but because we feel like we have to do those things for God to really love and accept us.
Listen, God cannot love you anymore or any less than He already does! Stop striving to get God to love you and rest in the fact that He’s already crazy in love with you.
“O LORD, you have searched me and known me!”
“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” (Psalm 139:1, 13-14)
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11 )
God knows us intimately…He knows our actions, our locations, our thoughts and words, our ways, and our motives. In fact, God knows us better & watches us more closely than the most attentive & loving parent. But even more than that, He knows what is best for us and does all He can to guide us that way. He knows the most intricate details of our lives and His plans are to give us a hope & a future.
“I will never leave you or forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5)
God will always be there for you. He is not distant. He will not disappoint. He will never forsake you. He will never leave you. Even if you choose to forsake or leave Him…He is always there and ready to forgive and restore you the moment you repent and turn back to Him.
When you begin to see your Everlasting Father through the lens of Scripture it changes everything. You’ll find an Everlasting Father that is…
- Compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
- Caring & Committed to you because you are fearfully & wonderfully made.
- Concerned for your well-being and has plans for a future and a hope.
- Always there for you.
- And His love is deeper, greater, & better than any love you received or failed to receive from your earthly father.