Today is father’s day. This means that for many churches the subject of the sermons will be about our heavenly Father. Unfortunately, for many churches that focus on the interpersonal psychological relationship that people have with God, they will focus on how God is not like your earthly Father. “Your earthly father is angry. God is not. Your father is flawed, God is not,” Etc.
Although many of these statements may be true, that God is not many of the negative characteristics of our earthly fathers, the focus is entirely wrong. We do not define God by what he is not—at least not primarily. We know who God is because of who he is.
I know from Scripture that God is patient. Read the accounts following God delivering the Israelites form Egypt and you will see his long suffering patience. God rescues them. They whine that they are going to die of thirst. So he gives them water. They whine that they will die without food. He gives them the miraculous Manna. They whine that it is bland. He gives them quail. They whine about to much meat and on and on. God is patient.
God is faithful. What he promises he brings about. He anoints David as king, and David eventually becomes king. He promises the Messiah, and the Messiah has come. Again and again, God’s word is faithful.
It is true that at times we can see what God is not. He is not abusive. But even with psychology, we get a lot farther with our lives by focusing what is true, what can be done, what will happen then by what didn’t happen, what should have occurred, and what is wrong with the world.
So this fathers day, focus on who your heavenly Father is, not who he is not.