For many of us, Father’s Day might just be another Sunday in June. In fact, the day may not be a regularly celebrated holiday in your home—and for your own valid reasons. Maybe you have a fractured relationship with your father. Or maybe the father figures in your life look different from the norm. No matter what your relationship is with this day or the feelings that you may hold toward it, may you rest in the understanding that you do indeed have a heavenly Father who knows and loves you intimately. So here are 3 ways to know the Father’s love.
1. The Father Who Creates
To really understand God as Father, it helps to go back to the beginning. In His wholeness and self-sufficiency, He created the earth and everything in it. This includes the world and all its inhabitants (Psalm 24:1). He reveals His character through His creation. His attention to detail, mindfulness, and creative expression of Himself are made known within and throughout the beings He has fashioned from His own uncreated image.
God crafted each of us intentionally—with features and with traits that reflect and highlight who He is. His love is also manifested in the ways in which His hand has orchestrated our individual and collective stories since the beginning of time. Psalm 139:16 tells us, “Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in your book and planned before a single one of them began.”
Genesis 1:2 likewise describes the earth as being formless, just as we were before conception. A considerate and deliberately loving God fashioned us out of the nothingness for the glory of His own name. And resulting from that glory comes the divine purpose and calling we receive as beings crafted to proclaim and resound His glory to and throughout the world He has designed for Himself.
God has shown His fatherly love and care for us through this act of creation.
2. The Father Who Cultivates
The faithful God who creates is the One who continues to cultivate those He has fashioned from the dust. Contrary to the ways our emotions and circumstances may cause us to feel, we do not have a distant “watchmaker god” who simply created us and walked way; instead, we have a faithful Father who draws near and commits to raising up and nurturing those He has so carefully crafted.
Philippians 1:6 reminds us that the God who started His good work within us at the beginning is the same God who will continue to carry us—and His divine purposes—onto the finish line; we can rest in knowing there are no unfinished projects in the kingdom of God as His Spirit counsels us along the way.
2 Corinthians 1:3 bestows Him with the title of “Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles.” Meanwhile, Psalm 86:15 tells us that God’s compassion towards us is in fact due to His fatherly nature. His identity as Father—His intentionality in giving Himself this role and responsibility in our lives—is at the core of our relationship with the gospel. He does not leave our circumstances barren and without hope. Instead, He continually cultivates and grants us faith for the assurance of these things unseen (Hebrews 11:1).
God’s love is made known to us through cultivating our lives with the knowledge of Himself.
3. The Father Who Claims
One of the most difficult truths regarding your relationship to God’s role as father might be the notion that as a believer, you are fully brought into His family—not as just the hired help or the kid next door. Hebrews 2:11 tells us that “the One who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father. That is why Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.”
For some of us, words like these don’t seem fit for the holy scriptures. Especially for those who have complex relationships with their earthly father. But the shameless love He holds for us is the basis of what Christ has done to redeem us. And the author of Hebrews repeats this idea to us in Hebrews 11:16. Once again, we are reminded that He is not ashamed to be called our God. This proclamation of our identity as sons and daughters does not stem from the things we bring to the table. Rather, it comes from what Christ has already done on our behalf. And as a result, God the Father can view us through the same lens of His perfect Son who made a way and prepared a place for us in the House of God (John 14:3).
The Father claims us as His own—with no regrets or second thoughts or worries of our inadequacy. We don’t have to make the honor roll to receive His divine favor. Instead, by grace through faith, we walk in the freedom granted to us as His children. We are given all that we need to please Him through all that Christ has already accomplished.
The love of God as the Father is revealed to us through the act of claiming us as His own.
Not the Spirit of Fear, but of Adoption
“For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear. Instead, you received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry out, ‘Abba, Father!’” —Romans 8:15
Because of Jesus, we are accepted, loved, and able to move forward boldly without fear of condemnation or inadequacy. At the heart of the gospel is the fatherly heart of our God. This Father unashamedly loved us enough to give us His only Son so that we, too, could be brought into the family. For the believer, life everlasting begins when this truth becomes reality. May you lean into the love of this perfect Father.