A Faith Journey of a Common Man
Author: faith soldier

Chapter 2
-Our Father-

Mark 14:36 - "Abba, Father," Jesus said

 

What a glorious verse! Jesus was calling on his Father, in a time of need and desperation. In today’s world the common approach to God, is not considering Him as a father figure. People will use a word pertaining to the one and only almighty God, the Creator of all things – like friend.

If you put things into perspective, on an earthly note, you do not consider your own father a “friend”. A Father is a figure that should be filled with an unconditional love, an instructor of life, a role model, a provider, a pastor of the house, a disciplinarian, filled with patience, mercy, grace, and a man to “fear” when a child disobeys.  A synonym of friend can be “pal” or “buddy”.  I do not look to God as “my buddy”.

Deuteronomy 10:12 - And now, O Israel, what does the LORD your God ask of you but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul,

This is the way we need to look at God.

When Jesus taught his Disciples how to pray, what did he say? The beginning of the most beautiful prayer justifies how to perceive God.

Matthew 6:9 – “this, then, is how you should pray: "Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,

In return God perceives all of mankind, as His children.

Romans 8:16 - The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children.

 

Before I became a father myself, a friend once said to me:

“Having a child is the most wonderful experience in the world! As a baby they look up to you like you are a God.  Cherish the time you spend with them because when they get older, they do not want to have anything to do with you anymore.”-Mike

As I examine this statement, at the time I really did not understand.  By no means would I ever consider myself a God.  The attributes of being a good father can be closely related. Now that I am raising a child of my own, I am starting to realize the powerful significance of those words. My baby looks up at me in Awe, totally dependent on every one of her needs. In return I have the ability to comfort or not comfort all that she is dependent on.

Luke 18:17 - I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it."

 

We must view God with child like faith, and trust all in Him.  This means that we have to accept God as a figure we cannot quite humanly comprehend. This is similar to my baby looking to me for everything.  She does not know why or how, but her needs are met, because of the love that I have to offer. 

These are the reality of faith and love both working together. We will only completely understand this when we accept God and enter His Heavenly realm. He is the heavenly Father patiently waiting for all of us to accept Him into our lives and put Him first.

1 John 3:2 - Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.

All my child’s actions are characterized by her sounds.  This is the only communication she knows.  Most of the time when she needs something – a general feeling of discomfort, food, a diaper change, a simple holding her close to me, she will cry.  This lets me know, that I as a Father, need to comfort her in some way, shape, or form. Happiness is shown through cute “coos”, letting me know that she is comfortable, and all of her needs have been met.

The way we communicate with God is with daily prayer and repentance. 

 Psalm 66:18-20 - If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened; but God has surely listened and heard my voice in prayer. Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!

 

God listens to ALL prayers and even knows what we want or need before we even pray:

Matthew 6:8 - your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

Answering the prayer is another order.  When you ask for something, in return God will interpret if it is right for you, and determine if what is asked will ultimately lead to sin.  Just like my child, when she gets older, if she asks for something, I have to distinguish whether or not it is right for her.  Just because she asks, does not mean she will receive.  I have the ability as a father to say “yes” or “no”.

 

When we pray we should consider this our personal time with God, as Jesus instructs in the below verse, a good time to do so:

 

Matthew 6:6 - But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

 

A lot of prayers that God hears are with selfish intent.  If you ask to be rich with money (which I am sure is common prayer that God hears), what actually would be the final outcome of getting it?  God knows that you would be setting yourself up for more pain then you already have, and at the end of the road sin will follow.  Sure you would be able to pay those bills off that you desperately need to do.  In the final outcome, it will lead yourself and others to more problems than you started with. Becoming rich with money does not make you a better person, only more selfish.  You may say that if you had the money you would help out family, friends, give to charity, etc.  In the end that money that you give could lead to yours and someone else’s destruction.  It is dangerous not just for this physical life, but for the spiritual life.  This is what Jesus said:

 

Luke 18:25 - Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.

 

If my little girl asks me to buy for a new doll to play with, or asks for me to buy a doll for her friend, because her family cannot afford one, which scenario would make me more proud?  This is what God wants us to do.

When we pray it should not only be for our self, but for others.  We need to look beyond our selfish wants and desires.  We need to give thanks to God for all that He has already provided for us.  We need to be humble enough to accept that God knows what is best for us. 

Isaiah 48:17 - This is what the LORD says— your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: "I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.

When your selfish ambition is left out of prayer, it is time to look at the below passages:

 Matthew 21:22 - If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer."

Mark 11:24 - Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

If you are having trouble giving thanks to God for all that He has already provided in your life, you need to take a minute and look a little closer.  If you compare yourself to others in the world, you are much better off than a lot of people.  You may have a job, a roof over your head, a car, a family, daily food, friends, your health, the simple act of breathing, fresh water, clothing, the list can go on and on.  These are things we need to give thanks to God for, and pray for people in the world that do not have them.  You are already blessed more than you know.  These may seem like the simple things in life, but we tend to take them for granted.

The problem is that people want a better job, a bigger house, a more expensive car, designer clothing, extravagant dining, upgrades on forms of entertainment -  big screen televisions, the most expensive stereo’s, gaming systems like Nintendo Wii, Play Station and all the games and accessories, the best seats to sporting events, etc.  These are all materialistic things, and this sinful world is formed around it.  Why can’t we just humble ourselves and be happy with all that God has already provided?

As my child grows, she will look to me and her mother for everything. All our actions will reflect on her up-bringing.  If she sees me perform unjust acts, she will do the same.  If she sees me execute just acts, she will act equivalent.  When we look at God, there is no flaw at all.  He is “Holy and Perfect” without sin.  All is “good” about Him and His love for us. 

Psalm 136:1 - Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good. His love endures forever.

Deuteronomy 32:4 - He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.

2 Samuel 22:31 - "As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.

Now we may not be able to determine why God does the things that He does.  It may seem not fair for a lot of things from a human stand point.  But because He is Holy, Divine, Righteous, and just, it is not up to any of us to question His authority.  It is so easy to blame God for misfortune in one’s life, but you need to analyze where the problem has developed.  God is filled with love, and does not want to see anyone not enter His kingdom, although not everyone will.

Matthew 7:21 - "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

 

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