John placed the child and father together so that we would see the essential nature of reproduction in reaching and expressing maturity. The Holy Spirit is our heavenly Father’s agent. But as I consider the blessings, I am also reminded of the responsibilities. These qualities are particularly the following: humility, gentleness, patience, discernment, compassion and love. A Father Gives Life to His Children. But like Paul to Timothy, God will often use spiritual fathers and mothers to reveal Himself to us, encourage us, and lead us in our walk. Discipline without affection can be tyrannical. C.S. I’m not suggesting that spiritual fathers model perfectly. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? Many think humble people are weak and passive. One of the best qualities of a good father and husband is the inclination to take initiative—to “just do it” because it needs to get done. The Qualities of a Godly Father Mark 5: 21-24; 35-43 Today is a special day for many of the men here. In fact, God sent John the Baptist “in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children” (Luke 1:17). A spiritual father does not overstep the role of the natural father. One result of the gospel in man’s life is that a biological father will also be his children’s spiritual father. In the presence of your wife and children, you can open the Bible for ten or fifteen minutes each night, explaining and applying what you’ve read, and then walk the talk. God is a Father to the fatherless. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. He and his wife, Judy, have five children and twenty-two grandchildren. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. A father's primary goal is to make the son successful in knowing the Lord, and fulfilling the call of God on the son's life. If you discipline unjustly, ask that child to forgive you. Anyone who assumes he is free and independent apart from God is in reality enslaved to the world and a lackey of Satan. The quest of the Spiritual Warrior is the same as spiritual seekers around the world. But our heavenly Father is also affectionate. This is especially important in spiritual things like family prayer, Bible study, church attendance, and discussions about spiritual things. In the words of Revelation 3:18, “wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.” A humble man has no illusions about this. Even as believers, it is possible to be a biological father but not a spiritual father to one’s children. It is also experiential. B illy Graham once said: “A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed, and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society.”. He is the author of multiple books & lead pastor at Threshold Church. He disciplines the children that he loves. Shares. Being a father is one of the great joys in life. Characteristics of Fathering Leaders. This is not the biblical ideal. They “knew” God the Father and imitated him. Jake is the author of multiple books, and he speaks at churches, conferences, retreats, and other events. Whether standing in the synagogue or picking wheat along the path, interacting with the Father was so natural that others around Him could not help but do the same. Today, I think of him with fondness and gratitude. This month’s faith lesson provides the perfect opportunity for you to talk with your teen about fatherhood — what it is and what it can be when we see the heavenly Father as our model. He knows he has fallen short of the glory of God, and he does not expect his performance to merit his relationship with God. He said that he thanked God for him and told him that “without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day” (2 Timothy 1:3). If you treat your wife disrespectfully, apologize to her in front of your children. It is never either one or the other. Writing Letters Spiritual Vitality Strong People Spiritual Maturity From The Beginning Virtues Of Young People Man's Authority Over The Devil Maturity Fathers Responsibilities I have written to you, fathers, because you know Him who has been from the beginning. A Loving Father. Sometimes we can look to spiritual fathers but we do … As my father did not share my faith, it was difficult to go to him for spiritual advice. He was my biological father, but he was not a spiritual father. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord, Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 1:3). Paul freely gave to Timothy what God had given to him. It is this heart relationship that provides the context for a spiritual fathering dynamic. Since God was an eternal Father when man was created in the image of God (Gen. 1:26, 27), he was given the potential role of father to earthly children. Although he was not my biological father, he was a spiritual father for me. Just as sons in the natural receive an inheritance from their fathers, spiritual fathers lead their sons into their spiritual inheritance. Please consider this request from John Piper and become a monthly partner by December 31. If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. I am blessed to have children and very thankful for that wonderful opportunity. He is “merciful and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness” (Exodus 34:6). But we must start with the father simply being present. They don’t get entangled in the immature behavior of others. Even as believers, it is possible to be a biological father but not a spiritual father to one’s children. God the Father is a combination of humility and initiative. In the early days of the church—with few models to follow—people needed spiritual mothers and fathers to teach them how to be Christians. Ten Characteristics of Jesus Christ and How to Develop Them Jesus taught, “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). Characteristics of a Pastor. I have cried over spiritual sons and daughters. Paul was constantly encouraging Timothy in his walk with God and his calling as a leader. He lives with his wife and family in Lancaster, PA where he serves as the lead pastor of Threshold Church. I have held back tears while driving a spiritual father to the airport after a visit. And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers . He told him to stir up the gifts of God, and then reminded him that “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7). 2. All of this needs to be applied with grace. Elijah, Elisha, John the Baptist, and the apostle Paul did the same. “The quality of a father can be seen in the goals, dreams and aspirations he sets not only for himself, but for his family.” – Reed Markham. The spirit and power of Elijah cares for widows, orphans, and children. In this post I want to highlight 6 qualities of a true son in the Lord. This critical point is that you are not a spiritual father just because of your mature characteristics and deep relationship with the “I AM. But it is not simply gifts that fathers impart. Each was filled with the Holy Spirit. We’re on a mission to change that. Here we need to rest in the mystery of God’s sovereignty. Despite his weaknesses, he rejoices in an unearnable love gifted to him by a gracious Father. Through the miracle of new birth, God adopts us into his family. Takes initiative. William Farley is a retired pastor and church planter. Malachi 4:10 . There is no shortcut to this knowledge. Spiritual fathering is the major leadership method for building the body of Christ. This is the essence of love. Anyone can be a dad, but it takes a special man to be a father. On Father’s Day, much of the world takes the time to appreciate the work of good fathers. Then they become spiritual fathers to the local church. In the same way, spiritual fathers initiate. They do this because this is what our Heavenly Father does. For example, he is a good listener, he has a great sense of awareness and even when he has not experienced the same life event as someone that he serves, he empathizes and accepts them for who they are. How Long Should the Church Set Aside Essential Practices to Follow the Government’s COVID-19 Orders? Maybe you feel like you're not a good enough Christian to be an effective spiritual equipper. (This attitude of Paul can be seen clearly in 1 Thessalonians 2:8). Today has been set aside to honor fathers. They don't know how to be a spiritual parent. The spiritual father will pour out knowledge, understanding, wisdom, counsel, and blessing to the son. Spiritual fathers are critical to the fulfillment of this prophecy, but so is the rise of sons and daughters. As God has brought spiritual fathers into my life, and as I have begun to step into a fathering role, I am beginning to see some characteristics that mark spiritual fathers. What made these men prototypical spiritual fathers? I have experienced the heart connection and tears that are involved in these types of relationships. Yet Jesus taught us to pray “Our Father in heaven” because He was confident in the character and the heart of a heavenly Father. God is treating you as sons. Be imitators of me: In context, this must refer back to Paul’s description of himself and his ministry in 4:8-13. 3. Many things go into the making of a good father, but there are a few traits that stand out above the rest. Neither should faithful single mothers be discouraged. I was converted at age 22. But combine these two virtues in the same man and he is on the road to spiritual fatherhood. Affection without discipline will spoil children. A father might do everything right, and yet despite this, one of his children never relates to him as a spiritual father. Lewis suggested that masculinity is the willingness to initiate. It is a privilege to pass on the blessing of God. Even though we live in a fallen world, and we often fall short of this ideal, let us labor wholeheartedly toward this end. There is a cry for spiritual fathers and mothers in today’s church; men and women who will invest in others sacrificially, with no strings attached. Far from it. Your email address will not be published. Fathers instill character development in kids There are so many more characteristics of a faithful Christian leader that I could list here. He is now dead, and I miss him. Turn in your Bible, if you will, to 1 Corinthians chapter 4 as we look to our study for this morning. To the degree that pastors and elders become spiritual fathers to their biological children, their churches, like their biological families, will become spiritual families. For most dads, the best time to do this is the dinner hour. So extensive was the Son’s teaching that the apostle John called him the Word of God, and Jesus modeled in flesh and blood everything he taught. (Hebrews 12:7–8). Humility is the ability to see myself as I really am apart from gospel-grace. . Your email address will not be published. A pastor conducts religious services and performs other spiritual responsibilities associated with his belief system. Spiritual Fathers are brave enough to know that God has called them for a holy calling, a righteous purpose to raise sons and strengthen daughters. It is often the voice of a father that people are lacking. If born again, we want to be both the biological and spiritual fathers of our children. Being a spiritual father involves encouraging, coaching, and correcting when needed. ‘Teknon’ stresses the new spiritual relationship of life we enjoy because of our acceptance of Christ as Saviour and Lord (e.g. Our mindset as physical or spiritual fathers should follow Paul’s perspective: “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1). Although he was not my biological father, he was a spiritual father for me. God called himself a father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5). We look through Jesus to see God the Father (John 14:9). He initiated creation, redemption, and our salvation. While not exhaustive, I believe that 2 Timothy 1:1-7 gives us a blueprint for many of these attributes (All of these could apply to mothers as well). Consequence of their idolatry, he was a spiritual father not only goes with you battle! 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