The Father's Compassion
Scheduled for June 15
(Psa 103:13 NIV) As a father
has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear
of us approach Father’s Day with one question in mind: what do we get dad for
Father’s Day? The stores are filled with some of the strangest junk, all
labeled with the phrase, “Perfect for Dad!” It’s particularly difficult for
me, for a couple of reasons:
My dad is 80 years old, and as for
material things, it’s difficult to get him something that doesn’t fit in the
category of “one more thing to dust.” He’s getting rid of those.
He’s also the most intimidating
person I know. He was a company commander in the Army for many years; his
troops called him “The Bear.” Enough Said!
such a man, however, there is a gentleness that comes through strength. This
is a man who looks back and tells his stories not to prove how great he is but
rather for a good laugh. It is this immense strength, clothed in love and
gentleness, that I admire in the man.
than that, my Father is a giving man. As I write this, I am looking for a new
job, and not by my choice. 80 years old, retired, his son pushing 50, and he
still takes me aside and says, “Now don’t get yourself in financial
difficulties. Remember we’re here - and I’ve been where you are..” He
understands my need to be the breadwinner (none better); he also understands
how difficult life can be, and asks for the privilege of helping.
heavenly father has compassion on us, just like that. By the grace of the
Incarnation, he understands where we are. By his great love, he has mercy on
(Rom 5:8 NIV) But God
demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ
died for us.
here it is Father’s Day. What kind of a gift should we bring to this
compassionate heavenly Father of ours? Fortunately, he’s told us what he
(Mat 9:13 NIV) But go and
learn what this means: 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have not come to
call the righteous, but sinners." (The quotation is Hosea 6:6).
greatest gift a son can give his Father is to be an imitator of his Father.
Our heavenly Father is merciful to us; He desires us to be merciful to each
other. As we approach Communion, let us remember that it is the repeated
symbol of the ultimate expression of God’s mercy to us: Christ’s sacrifice on
the cross. He has been merciful to us to the fullest measure possible. Let us
therefore examine ourselves, and ask: am I giving my Father what he desires